It really is starting to seem like old times for the Bulls. The problem is that’s not a good thing.
With Derrick Rose already down for the season after right knee surgery and Jimmy Butler still in street clothes with turf toe, it now sounds like Luol Deng could miss tonight’s game with the Pistons, nursing a sore left calf.
“I don’t know if Lu is playing tonight, he’s got to get his [left calf] right, but we have to just find a way against a good team that’s playing very well right now,’’ center Joakim Noah revealed after the shootaround. “Just got to find a way to win at home.’’
According to coach Tom Thibodeau, Deng did very little activity in the shootaround.
“We’re also looking at where we are in the schedule, too,’’ Thibodeau said.
Where they are is a game against Detroit and then two off days before playing four games in five nights, which means resting Deng now might be smart.
That means the rest of the team picking up a lot of slack, especially with Deng averaging 28.5 points and 6.5 rebounds per game in December.
Playing short-handed is nothing new for this team, especially after going through it all of last season, and then into the playoffs.
“Hey look, the disappointment was for Derrick,’’ Thibodeau said, reflecting back on the injuries the last few weeks. “And we knew that. You hated to see it because of the type of person that he is. For us, we just have to always feel this way. You don’t get here by accident. If you’re in the pros, you’re a great player. We have to be a great team. It’s not an individual sport. It’s a team sport. If our team is tied together and doing the right things, we’ll have a chance to win.’’