Mike DiNovo-US PRESSWIRE
The oft-criticized forward has made his presence felt in the preseason thus far.
Carlos Boozer will be counted on a lot in Derrick Rose's absence. More than that, he's always been a player that the fanbase wanted to see step up in a big way. On Friday against the Minnesota Timberwolves, Boozer definitely made his presence felt, even if it was only the preseason.
Boozer had 24 points, and was aggressive on the court. He had four assists, four steals and nine rebounds as well, and really led the team to their 92-81 victory. In a blog post on the Bulls' official website, coach Tom Thibodeau discussed Boozer's play:
"I like the way that Carlos played tonight. He is practicing well. Tonight he got into a good rhythm. We have to seek him out more. The guys did a good job of getting the ball to Carlos. When he has his feet in the lane and showing you his number, we have to get him the ball. Carlos' effort on the boards was good. Tonight he was a multiple effort guy. He is capable of doing that all the time."
Still, the Bulls were forced to bring some of their starters back out to get the win on Friday. Boozer came back in and played some. Going forward, Boozer will be getting extended minutes. He won't necessarily make the whole team function through him, but if they're to win games without Rose, they need the kind of performance that Boozer put up on Friday when the games begin to count during the regular season.