THE BULLS X-FACTOR
There were a lot of things to like about the Bulls’ opener against the Bucks. Derrick Rose’s debut, of course. Kirk Hinrich making a seamless transition to coming off the bench. The Bulls’ 44 free throw attempts. A solid all-around game by Luol Deng. Joakim Noah protecting the paint with those 3 blocked shots.
But the most impressive? Tyrus Thomas led the team in minutes, playing over 41. The former regime did not play Thomas max minutes due to perceived lack of effort, foul trouble or the desire to play other forwards. That he led the team in minutes played in the season opener is HUGE.
Thomas made the most of playing all those minutes by filling out the statsheet: 15 points on 5-10 FG and 5-8 FT; 10 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals and one block. Called by many the Bulls X-Factor for this year, Thomas definitely is off to the right start.