Coming into the game on Monday night, very few people expected the Brooklyn Nets to defeat the Chicago Bulls. It turns out that they were right. The Bulls defeated the Nets by a score of 118-88, as reported by ESPN.
Since they were up against a team with less talent, the Chicago Bulls did not rely too heavily on their star trio of Rajon Rondo, Dwyane Wade, and Jimmy Butler. Instead, the supporting cast was given a chance to shine, and some of them came through rather nicely.
Jimmy Butler only took ten shots on Monday, but he managed to convert six of them, including two of the three shots that he took from the outside. The 6-foot-6 forward also hit eight of the nine free throw attempts that he was given. Butler also chipped in with six rebounds and two assists on a relatively quiet evening.
Rajon Rondo hit five of the eight shots that he took, which was good enough to produce ten points. While he had four assists, he also had three turnovers. That ratio needs to be improved. Rondo also provided two steals and a block.
Dwyane Wade took the most shots of the starting lineup. He missed eight of the 13 shots that he took and only got to the foul line once. The 12 points were pedestrian compared to what Wade is capable of. The 6-foot-4 guard had four assists, but that was completely negated by the five turnovers. The three steals and a block was helpful, though.
With high-profile teammates on the court, Taj Gibson knows that there are going to be plenty of nights where opposing defenses in the NBA neglect him. He took advantage of that against the Brooklyn Nets. The 6-foot-9 forward hit seven of his nine shots, which was good for 14 points. Gibson also 11 rebounds, a steal, and a block.
It is no secret that Nikola Mirotic wants to be in the starting lineup for the Chicago Bulls. He used the game against the Brooklyn Nets to make his case. Mirotic took ten shots from the outside and made four of them, which was good for 16 points. To make more of an argument, the 6-foot-10 forward also pulled down ten rebounds, blocked three shots, and dished out three assists.
Last season, Bobby Portis showed some promise as someone that might become an eventual starter in the NBA. This season, the young backup forward is having trouble getting on the court for the Chicago Bulls. Against the Brooklyn Nets, he was only given four minutes of playing time.
Cristiano Felicio is making an argument for more playing time. The 6-foot-9 forward earned himself 23 minutes of playing time against the Brooklyn Nets, and he rewarded head coach Fred Hoiberg with seven rebounds.
With Michael Carter Williams spraining his right knee, Isaiah Canaan took advantage by producing 15 points and six assists off the bench. He also hit three of his four outside shots as well.
Rookie guard Denzel Valentine is still struggling to work his way into the rotation.
Brook Lopez is considered by many as the best player on the Brooklyn Nets roster. He did not play that way against the Chicago Bulls. The starting center had 13 points and a block, but he only pulled down two rebounds in 22 minutes of playing time. The Nets are going to need more than that.
Jeremy Lin and Trevor Booker combined for seven steals, but that was not nearly enough to turn the tide of the game.
Despite playing just 21 minutes as a starter, Bojan Bogdanovic still managed to put up 11 shots, which was good enough for 15 points.
Luis Scola and Justin Hamilton combined to pull down 15 rebounds off the bench, so the two of them might find themselves receiving more playing time from Brooklyn Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson in the near future.
Backup guard Sean Kilpatrick came off the bench and took more shots than anyone on the team. He only made three of the 13 attempts that he took. However, he was able to put up 13 points because he managed to get to the free throw line seven times, where he did not miss a shot. If Kilpatrick can continue attacking the basket like that, then he might be a bigger part of the rotation.
Veteran guard Greivis Vasquez was the only member of the Brooklyn Nets who failed to get off the bench.
[Featured Image by Michael Reaves/Getty Images]