Chat with Nick Friedell
Welcome to ESPNChicago.com! On Thursday, Nick Friedell stops by to chat about the NBA season as well as the Chicago Bulls.
Friedell covers the Chicago Bulls for both ESPN Radio 1000 and ESPNChicago.com.
Send your questions now and join the chat Thursday at 2 p.m. CT/3 p.m. ET!
Nick Friedell (3:07 PM)
What's going on everybody? Let's get this chat rolling ...
Mark (Manhattan, IL)
Will Rip play anymore in this series?
Nick Friedell (3:08 PM)
I think he will and I think he could still have an impact during the postseason at some point -- but it's clear for the time being that Thibs has decided to give Belinelli the bulk of the minutes off the bench.
James (Cali) [via mobile]
Nick, If the Bulls get past Nets, is there an realistic chance DR comes back?
Nick Friedell (3:10 PM)
Like I've been saying since February -- I don't think Derrick is going to play this year. But if the Bulls do in fact end up facing the Heat it's going to be very interesting to see what happens.
Brandon [via mobile]
Why don't run more plays for Jimmy Butler ? He can score the Ball... I feel like he is getting held back on offense just a lil bit
Nick Friedell (3:11 PM)
Jimmy still doesn't have a ton of confidence in his offense just yet. He's gotten much better and will continue to improve but he has reached that level yet where the Bulls will repeatedly run sets for him.
Jimmy- West Coast [via mobile]
Why does Thibs keep the door open on Rose? Is Rose himself leaving door open?
Nick Friedell (3:12 PM)
They both have. I don't understand why and I think the Bulls have done Rose a disservice from a public relations standpoint but Thibs has said he's learned from his previous coaching stops never to completely rule out any player ... even in the playoffs.
Aron (La Grange)
Who is going to be the biggest factor on the Bulls tonight?
Nick Friedell (3:13 PM)
Kirk Hinrich. If he can continue slowing down Deron Williams the Bulls will win.
Hey Nick -What are the possibilities that the Bulls try to make some big noise during the offseason? Kevin Love has been linked to the Bulls on and off for a while now - any chance they make a run at him in a buy-low situation? He's clearly not going to be in Minnesota for any longer than his contract allows.
Nick Friedell (3:15 PM)
The Bulls will absolutely inquire about Love. The problem for them is I don't think the Timberwolves want to move him right now. The biggest name to keep an eye on with the Bulls is Luol Deng. If he doesn't want to sign a cheaper extension the Bulls may look to move him for more assets.
Noah's performance Monday night was pretty incredible. Think he keeps up the intensity at home tonight?
Nick Friedell (3:16 PM)
The intensity will be there -- I don't know if the stats will be though. What Noah did lifted up the rest of his teammates but don't forget his foot is still killing him.
Is Thibs letting Lopez get his and focusing more on stopping D-Will? It seemed that D-Will was getting doubled often and Lopez was wide open for a long jumper.
Nick Friedell (3:18 PM)
The Bulls know if they want to win this series they have to stop Williams. They'll let Lopez take all the long jumpers he wants if they can slow down Williams.
Dave (Menomonee Falls, WI)
Nick - Do you think the Bulls would ever consider striking while the iron's hot and use Jimmy Butler as trade bait to land a second superstar or is he untradeable at this point?
Nick Friedell (3:20 PM)
Jimmy Butler has been solid for the Bulls all year and they would like to keep him but the only untouchable on this roster is Derrick Rose.
Nick Friedell (3:23 PM)
I have a question: Are there really people out there that are going to the game tonight who would boo Derrick Rose if he sits on the bench?
Good Nate or Bad Nate tonight?
Nick Friedell (3:24 PM)
There's a little of both every night.
Mark (Manhattan, IL)
How's Taj feeling?
Nick Friedell (3:26 PM)
Seems to be feeling fine. Thibs will use him even more if he can stay out of foul trouble.
Due to injuries, the Bulls reserves have had to play a lot of minutes during the regular season. I think that could help now that people are starting to become more healthy. Do you think that bench depth will have a big impact the rest of the series?
Nick Friedell (3:27 PM)
I think the fact that the Nets bench isn't very consistent at all will help the Bulls more than anything else.
Jonathan(San Antonio) [via mobile]
Nick if you were the bulls owner would you give up boozer,butler,mirotic,and the Charlotte pick for Kevin love. To me it just doesn't sound right
Nick Friedell (3:30 PM)
Obviously, there are a lot of factors involved. I would see if I could lower the price and get either Mirotic or the Charlotte pick out of the deal -- but if I got some kind of assurance from Love that he would re-sign then yes -- I would make this deal if these were the only terms Minnesota would accept.
Naz seems to have found the fountain of middle age all of sudden, was he pacing himself early in the season. Seems like he is now a competent back up center.
Nick Friedell (3:32 PM)
The difference is Thibs has been forced to use him because of all the injuries. To Nazr's credit, he has responded in a major way.
As frustrating as the non-return has been, I think it would be outrageous to boo him on the bench. Fans should be proud that he is clearly so excited to see his team succeed and help his teammates any way he can. Booing does nothing to help him recover, it only exacerbates a tough situation.
Nick Friedell (3:33 PM)
I agree. I'd be very surprised if many people boo at all. They will be drowned out by cheers.
With another possible player exodus on the horizon do the Bulls let Belinelli, Mohammed, Cook, Vlad, Nate Rob, RIP walk? Is there any scenario where a couple of these guys stay based on the CAP or do they walk? If they walk, is there enough room to go after Mayo? Do you think the Bulls are interested in Mayo?
Nick Friedell (3:36 PM)
It all depends on the price and what players would be willing to re-sign for. I think almost every guy you mentioned will be gone. Belinelli has a chance to stay but somebody may offer him a better deal. The Bulls like Mayo but Mayo may get a bigger deal somewhere else.
Elliott (La Grange, Illinois)
Is Nate Robinson the Bulls "go to" guy for creating shots? Can he handle the closer role or is it Luol Deng?
Nick Friedell (3:40 PM)
Nate is really the only guy on the roster who can create his own shot. In his own mind he can handle the role, but I think Deng would be the pick if the Bulls needed to make one shot.
Tom S. (Sacramento)
If Thibs coached the Bears, who would he draft in the first round tonight?
Nick Friedell (3:42 PM)
The best defensive player left on the board.
Russ Chicago [via mobile]
Will Malcolm Thomas see any time? The kid can play! And brings energy
Nick Friedell (3:44 PM)
Thibs hasn't played him much at all. He's not going to start playing him now.
Is trading jimmy butler actually something the bulls would consider doing right now? he's a huge asset, especially as just an athlete playing defense and getting boards. with his scoring improving, will they really let him go??
Nick Friedell (3:46 PM)
For the right deal -- absolutely.
Jared, your home area [via mobile]
Best place to watch draft/Bulls ? I'm in Kissimmee on vaca
Nick Friedell (3:48 PM)
ESPN Club at the Disney's Boardwalk is a good spot. I had my birthday party there when I was 13.
Nick, Do you expect a let down game tonight? It seems that almost after every big win this year, the Bulls have followed it up with a let down loss. Can we expect the same tonight?
Nick Friedell (3:53 PM)
I expect the Bulls to find a way to win tonight. They are feeling great about their chances and they know they have all the emotional headed their way right now.
Nick Friedell (3:54 PM)
I am out of here, guys. I will talk to everybody later. If you're at a game this week come over and say hello.