Heading into Wednesday night, there was a reasonable argument in backing the Chicago Bulls against the Golden State Warriors. After all, the Bulls were playing in their home building and they were winners of 7 of their last 9 games, but what transpired once the ball was in the air was relatively surprising.
The Bulls manhandled the Warriors.
Chicago utterly cruised to a 103-83 victory against Golden State, but to be honest, the final score could have been much more lopsided. The Bulls led by as many as 28 points in the 4th quarter and by the time the Dubs woke up a bit, it was far too late to mount a challenge.
The defensive showing by the Bulls in this spot can’t be overstated, and overall, they were able to hold the sometimes high-powered Warriors to just 36% from the floor and 24% (5-for-21) from beyond the three-point arc. More impressively, Golden State failed to place even one member of their starting lineup in double-figures, and the vaunted perimeter trio of Stephen Curry, Andre Iguodala, and Klay Thompson combined to shoot just 6-for-26 against the feisty Chicago defense.
On the other end of the floor, it was a big night for the Bulls frontcourt, and they were able to spread the love offensively. Taj Gibson led the team in scoring (off the bench) with 21 points in only 27 minutes, but Joakim Noah had an impressive night (8 points, 17 rebounds, 7 assists), with Carlos Boozer (15 points, 13 rebounds) and Mike Dunleavy (15 points, game-best +30) having a lot of fun on their own.
It’s not every day that you see this type of defensive firepower on display, and while the Bulls are doing it with smoke and mirrors in the absence of Derrick Rose (and the exile of Luol Deng), Tom Thibodeau has them playing out of their minds right now.