As the Chicago Bulls begin the final home stretch of their season, with a contest tonight at the Washington Wizards, we took a look at what we could expect from them this postseason, which will mark their first playoff berth in a half-decade. To break it down we enlisted the help of Carlos Boozer, former NBA All-Star and Olympic Gold medalist. We caught up with him at Happy Camper Wrigleyville to talk all things balls.
And we do mean all things balls, perhaps you have heard about his new ad campaign for an underwear brand that caters to men who recently had vasectomies? We’ll save that for part two of this exclusive. For now, we’ll focus on NBA basketball. We asked Boozer, who played for the Bulls from 2010-2014, how far Chicago can really go this season and how they can realize their potential.
“I think they’re really good,” the member of the 2008 All-NBA third team said.
“I think they got to find their defensive magic, right. So a lot of those successes they had they were locking down teams. It’s tough when you got Lonzo Ball, great defensive guard, (Alex) Caruso’s back and he’s also a great defensive guard.
“Offensively, they’re very talented, but they can’t stop anybody that’s better than so to beat somebody who’s gonna walk out of the East, the Philadelphia’s, the Miami’s, they got to lock-up.”
The two teams that Booze mentioned, as well as the reigning champion Milwaukee Bucks, stand as major obstacles to the Bulls reaching the conference finals again, something that last happened when Boozer was on the team (2011).
While some believe that he hit the rookie wall, one of the many bright spots this season is the development of Ayo Dosunmu, who has carved out a niche for himself.
Dosunmu is really exceeding expectations this season as next to no one thought the middle of the second round draft pick would get starters minutes on this Bulls team.
“A man with a bright future, he plays hard,” said Boozer.
“He definitely should be first team all-rookie. And like one of those guys that the league has taken notice, and he’s important for this team to go. All these guys that have continued to grow together, suddenly it becomes really important for some of these young guys.
“It’ll be important for him.
“He can defend and he can score. He’s unselfish. Great pickup.”
Carlos Boozer, who also played for the L.A. Lakers and Utah Jazz, as well as the Bulls, placed a $50,000 bet on his alma mater, Duke, to win it all. The Blue Devils are currently in the Final Four, where they’ll take on arch-rival North Carolina in the national semifinal on Saturday night.
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Paul M. Banks is the owner/manager of The Bank (TheSportsBank.Net) and author of “Transatlantic Passage: How the English Premier League Redefined Soccer in America,” as well as “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry.”