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February 17, 2:00 PM ET
Chat with Nick Friedell

Nick Friedell
  (2:09 PM)

Hello from the Berto Center everybody. Sorry I'm late. Traffic is awful. Let's get this chat rolling ...

Adrian (Omaha, NE)

After last night, is it safe to say Boozer and Noah are finally developing the on court chemistry we were hoping for?

Nick Friedell
  (2:13 PM)

It's getting a lot better. Both players came out and talked about how they are feeling more comfortable with each other on the floor. Let's see how they perform in the playoffs, though. Then we'll know for sure.

Bryan (Chicago)

Nick - Big fan of your work. Did CJ show any notable frustration for losing the 4th quarter minutes to Mike James last night?

Nick Friedell
  (2:14 PM)

C.J. cheered on his teammates from the bench, but he has to be disappointed. He wants to be out there whenever he can, especially with Derrick Rose injured. Like a lot of people in the United Center, I think he was very surprised Thibs decided to stick with James.

anthony (northlake)

How important do you think getting the number 1 seed is to the bulls winning a championship and is there a team that is 7th or 8th that could scare the bulls in a first round series?

Nick Friedell
  (2:15 PM)

The answer to the first question is that it's very, very important to the Bulls. They want that extra game at the United Center. The answer to the second question is no.

Jason (Chicago)

Whats the over or under on minutes played by Luol Deng and Derrick Rose at the ASG?

Nick Friedell
  (2:15 PM)

A combined 50. I'm taking the under.

Bhavin (Deerfield)

Whats RIP's status? Are Bulls looking to add a SG?

Nick Friedell
  (2:16 PM)

Thibs says Rip is doing better. I still don't think he's coming back until after the All-Star break though.

Mike (Chicago)

Boozer and Noah played well together, but won't it only count when they actually do this against a team like the Heat? Boozer is almost a non-factor against good defensive teams.

Nick Friedell
  (2:17 PM)

What he said.

Patrick (Chicago)

Do you think Thibs will stand and yell directions at the players in the All-Star game or sit down and enjoy the show?

Nick Friedell
  (2:18 PM)

I have a hard time believing he'll do much yelling, but I don't he is going to be sitting down much, either.

OMARVLS (NORTH HOLLYWOOD, CA)

Nick, Do the BULLS have anything to worry about the KNICkS? I think I would rather play MIAMI in the playoffs than the Knicks because you truly don't know what they got

Nick Friedell
  (2:19 PM)

The Bulls don't think the Knicks can beat them in a seven game series. Sure, they have played better, but they have also been playing some bad teams. The only team that truly concerns the Bulls is Miami.

Shaun (Kenwood)

Why wont the bulls go after an aggressive guard, like JR Smith?

Nick Friedell
  (2:21 PM)

Simple answer: They believe Rip Hamilton is the best option for them. Nobody will remember how much he got hurt early in the year if he helps get them past Miami.

Alex (Brooklyn)

How is Loul's wrist holding up? After last night, seems like he's a-okay, but are they worried long-term?

Nick Friedell
  (2:21 PM)

The Bulls will be worried until the season ends. Deng's wrist seems to be fine, but he is definitely still in pain.

Jesse (Lincoln Square)

Ok, so besides the missed dunk, Boozer has played great as of late. Finishing around the rim, and making some great passes. Let's give him credit where credit is due eh?

Nick Friedell
  (2:23 PM)

Boozer has been great over the past couple of weeks. The problem for Carlos is that nobody will remember how well he's been playing if he falls flat again in the playoffs.

Brendan (Pittsfield, MA)

Nick - this goes w/o saying that the bulls are a much different team when Rose is out, but the ball movement and the pick and roll were a thing of a beauty last night. why don't we see more of the pick and roll w/booze and rose? Is it just me or has Boozer had his best games this year when Rose was out?

Nick Friedell
  (2:25 PM)

Brendan, it's a great question and one we've talked to Thibs about throughout the year. Rose and Boozer just don't run it as much as one might think. Rose prefers to create by going to the rim. Although, I'm sure Tom will show him the tape of the last couple games to show him what is possible of the pick and roll.

Michael (Dallas)

Is it neccessary for Rip to be back and healthy for the Bulls to fathom beating Miami in a playoff series? You don't think they could get it done with Brewer starting at the 2?

Nick Friedell
  (2:26 PM)

No, I don't. In order for the Bulls to beat Miami they have to have a healthy Rip.

Stephen (Orlando)

Was it true that Deng was talking to some kids courtside right before he made is 3 late in the game?

Nick Friedell
  (2:28 PM)

Yes, my buddy Chris Forsberg from ESPN Boston said that Deng told the kids in the front row that he would make the shot before he knocked it down at the end. After he hit it, he looked back and basically shrugged, 'I told you so.'

squash (chicago)

nick, for awhile i was really worried we would lose asik for nothing at the end of the year. but given how slowly he is coming along offensively and how well noah is playing, is it time to consider trading him for an athletic wing?

Nick Friedell
  (2:30 PM)

No, the Bulls still love Asik and want to keep him. He has regressed a little this season, but the Bulls still believe he will come around with more time.

Brian (Miami, FL)

Do the Bulls make a trade before the deadline? BTW, you look really happy in that pic

Nick Friedell
  (2:30 PM)

Doubtful. Thanks, I guess.

alan (chicago)

hey Nick great job as always my question is when cj watsons contract expires do you think they would bring him back or would they give someone like Mike James a chance

Nick Friedell
  (2:33 PM)

Alan, the Bulls really like Mike James, but he is only a short term solution. If C.J. does leave for a better offer down the line, they will look to bring in another veteran to play behind Rose.

Pavan (Atlanta)

Why do you think Brewer has been struggling recently? He is not shooting well and he seems to be losing more and more minutes to Korver.

Nick Friedell
  (2:34 PM)

After shooting the ball so well early, I think he's lost a lot of confidence in that shot. He's not looking for it as much. He doesn't seem to want to take the same looks he was taking early in the year.

Pat (Dallas)

I think Korver has made significant progress on defense this year. Am I crazy?

Nick Friedell
  (2:35 PM)

No, you aren't. Thibs has talked a lot about how Kyle has improved on defense this year. I think Kyle spent a lot of time working on his lateral quickness in the off-season and that work has paid off.

Elliot (Salt Lake City)

Are Bulls fans finally satisfied with Boozer's performance? And isn't it ironic he is one of the only Bulls not to be plagued with injuries thus far?

Nick Friedell
  (2:36 PM)

It is absolutely ironic. And Carlos deserves a lot of credit for playing every game this season. But I don't think Bulls fans have turned in his favor yet. He must perform well in the playoffs or none of his good work early this year will matter.

Joe (Rockford)

We can't have a Bulls chat without saying Happy Birthday to #23, the greatest.

Nick Friedell
  (2:37 PM)

There you go, Joe. You sound like my girl Sarah Spain.

Big Chris (Chicago)

With the ongoing toe issue and back problems. Wouldn't it be wise for D. Rose to skip the olympics this year? The NBA season may run to june and the olympics are in August. Soon after that it will time for training camp and a 82 game schedule.

Nick Friedell
  (2:38 PM)

Derrick badly wants to play in the Olympics. I'd be stunned if he doesn't.

Courtney (BMO Harris Bank)

Hey Nick what you listening to in the ride?

Nick Friedell
  (2:39 PM)

I actually had a little EPMD playing in there today.

Nick Friedell
  (2:39 PM)

Practice is over here at the Berto. I will talk to you guys next week.