No doubt Thibodeau focused non-stop on defense after Game 1, because his team has brought in on that end of the floor and completely lost their way on offense.
The Bulls finished the first half shooting 35% from the floor, 65% from the line and a whopping 10 turnovers. Shooting comes and goes, but the turnovers are an issue of focus. To the Pacers credit, they have been incredibly active on defense and have forced the issue on nearly every possession. They are playing with nothing to lose and the Bulls still haven’t matched their effort on both ends.
Carlos Boozer was the focal point of the offense in the first two quarters, finishing with 13 points and 9 rebounds. Noah was active on both ends and looked like the energetic player the Bulls have come to depend on. Rose had 13 points, 5 rebounds and 4 assists after sitting early with 2 fouls. He still has not been able to connect from the outside, with his shot looking flatter than usual.
The biggest development so far is that Indiana point guard Darren Collison sprained his ankle while falling over a photographer under the basket. His return has been listed as questionable and if he is unable to return the Pacers are going to need a huge effort from second year backup point guard A.J. Price.
The Bulls need to iron out their offensive spacing and ultimately, get some shots to fall. They are in the game because they are destroying the Pacers on the glass, 30-17. If they can begin to execute more consistently on offense, keeping turnovers to a minimum, the Bulls fortune will change in the second half.
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