Kyle Korver was placed in the starting lineup for All-Star Luol Deng, who is not available due to a left wrist injury. He admitted that his injury is one of the reasons that he only shot 1 of 9 from the field at their home loss to the Orlando Magic. Not only Deng was injured, but Joakim Noah (illness), Rip Hamilton (shoulder injury) and C.J. Watson are also not available to play.
On the other hand, Utah Jazz are missing their starters Devin Harris (stomach illness) and Raja Bell for unspecific reasons. The Utah Jazz are still treated to be a threat to the Chicago Bulls, because of their surprising win against fan favorite Miami Heat days ago. This is what Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau was so concerned about a possible back-to-back losses for the first time this season, but not today.
With their dominating performance in the second half, the Bulls prevented to have their first back-to-back losses this season. In the first half, The Bulls were up by 7 and pulling away in the 3rd and final period. Kyle Korver has been very impressive tonight, shooting 6 of 11 from beyond the arc as compared to his woeful shooting performance against the Orlando Magic.
Paul Millsap led the Utah Jazz with 26 points, while Al Jefferson and Josh Howard had contributed 16 and 15 points, respectively. Despite their good performance, it wasn't good enough to beat the short-handed Chicago Bulls. There are so many games that the depleted Bulls survived, especially without prized shooting guard Rip Hamilton, who was only limited to 16 games with various injuries.
Their next five games would be tougher (New York, Miami, Portland, Philadelphia and Orlando), and it would be possible that the depleted Chicago Bulls might survive them. But the New York Knicks and the Miami Heat are the ones that the Bulls might prepare, because both are must-see matches of this week. With Jeremy Lin's rise to stardom, and the dominance of LeBron James and the Heat, it's going to be a tough one for Derrick Rose and the Bulls to challenge them, even if they're currently the best team in the league.
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