View Full Version : Boozer benched in 4th quarter. Rose: "we were surprised"

01-08-2011, 03:25 AM
NEWARK, N.J. -- Chicago Bulls forward Carlos Boozer checked out of his team's 96-94 loss to the New Jersey Nets on Wednesday night with 2:21 left in the third quarter. He never returned. After the game, the frustrated veteran tried to explain why.

"You got to talk to Thibs about that," Boozer said. "That was a coaching decision."

Boozer, who signed a five-year deal worth close to $80 million in the offseason, finished the game with 12 points and nine rebounds, well below his 20 points per game average. Coach Tom Thibodeau hinted that Boozer's absence in the final quarter had a lot to do with matchups.

Despite Thibodeau's explanation, even his own players wondered why the first-year coach decided to bench one of the team's biggest offensive weapons down the stretch.

"Yeah, we were surprised," Bulls point guard Derrick Rose said. "But we're not going to try to coach. We're going to try to go out there and do our jobs and that's to play. We're just going to leave all the subbing and everything up to [Thibodeau]."

The Bulls take on the Philadelphia 76ers Friday night.


01-08-2011, 03:31 AM
This happened on Wednesday night. They've played a whole new game and discussed it since this story.

Also, I'm pretty sure this is a Bulls forum thing.

01-08-2011, 03:32 AM
This is the ESPN follow up that they're actually showing on their NBA page:

PHILADELPHIA -- Chicago Bulls forward Carlos Boozer has no lingering resentment over coach Tom Thibodeau benching him in the fourth quarter of Wednesday's loss to the New Jersey Nets.

"It's behind us, over and done with," Boozer said after Friday morning's shootaround. "Moving on to [Friday night's game against the Philadelphia 76ers]. Looking forward to the game tonight."

Thibodeau talked about matchups after the game and how the group that finished had led a comeback and deserved to stay on the court.

"Carlos has been great," Thibodeau said Friday. "The guy's a winner, and he's going to be on the floor most of the time.

"He and Derrick [Rose] sat most of the fourth quarter, and they're cheering their teammates on. At that point, we're just trying to find a way to get a win. ... We were looking to get more energy into the game. And the second unit went in and they were playing well so we had to make up ground. We were down 13. So they made up the 13 very quickly, and I just decided to ride that group because they were playing well."

Boozer was visibly upset after not playing the final 14 minutes in the 96-94 loss.

"You got to talk to Thibs about that," Boozer said at the time. "That was a coaching decision."

Boozer said Friday that he understood.

"He was just rolling with the guys that were making the comeback," Boozer said Friday.

Boozer said his anger was based in the fact his team lost.

"I was mad we lost," Boozer said. "I was [ticked] that we lost. And of course when you lose you want to be out there and help your team play as a competitor.

"I felt like if I was out there I would help my team win. But that's over and done with now. You can't go backwards. As much as you guys want to go backwards, we can't go backwards. We got to move forwards."
Source: http://sports.espn.go.com/chicago/nba/news/story?id=5998627

01-08-2011, 03:40 AM
There's also this:


Don’t you expect to be on the court at crunch time?

“I don’t worry about that,” Boozer went on as he began to laugh. “That’s not an issue to talk about. I’m looking forward to the game tonight. Any more segues where I can get us to the game tonight? Great game tonight, guys. Big game.”

These guys just don’t know how to work a controversy.

But wait!

After a while Boozer went into the locker room. When he exited coach Tom Thibodeau was talking with reporters. Boozer stopped and raised his fist toward Thibodeau.

Hey, we might have something here.

Boozer offered a big smile and fist bumped with Thibodeau, then enthusiastically ran onto the court.

No, you’re not getting drama from this team. They don’t even have as many technical fouls combined, including the coaching staff, as Dwight Howard.

Some more effort, though, would be nice for Thibodeau.

That really, really was the reason Thibodeau quarantined Boozer in the fourth quarter. Derrick Rose sat out most of the quarter as well. There is something to message sending and all that and holding players accountable, but Thibodeau isn’t much into the mind games. No, he’s no Phil Jackson. But Thibodeau does ask me at times what those Native American sessions are like. He wanted to know if they really burned incense and what exactly is incense.


Boozer wasn’t doing much, though more so on defense as he ran into a rare night Kris Humphries decided he was Otis Thorpe, running the floor, dunking, paying attention. Humphries had just been demoted in favor of rookie Derrick Favors, and Humphries decided to show something. It won’t happen often, but he beat the Bulls.

“We were horrible,” agreed Boozer. “That’s why coach was riding with the guys who were out there. The bench played great. They got us back in the game. The way CJ (Watson) played, the way Ronnie (Brewer) played, those guys got us back in. Kyle (Korver) hit a couple threes to get us going. It was a good decision. We almost won the game.”

Thibodeau doesn’t take the time to analyze anyone’s psyche and figure out what a move will mean in April. He needed someone who looked awake. He needed a stop. He says that a lot.

“Again, it wasn’t necessarily Carlos,” Thibodeau reiterated. “It was our whole team. We were low energy going into the fourth quarter, down 13 points. We were looking to get more energy into the game. The second unit went in, they were playing well. We had to make up ground. They made up the 13 very quickly. I just decided to ride that group because they were playing well.

“Carlos has been great,” Thibodeau said. “The guy’s a winner. He’s going to be on the floor most of the time. He and Derrick sat most of the fourth quarter and they’re cheering their teammates on. At that point, we’re just trying to get a win. That’s what that was all about. It wasn’t about any other stuff. It’s easy to point and say, ‘This guy didn’t do this. That guy didn’t do that.’ We play team defense. We weren’t protecting our basket and that’s a team responsibility. In transition and halfcourt, it’s not just one guy. It’s an entire group. I knew we were low energy. Carlos has done a lot of good things defensively. His rebounding is terrific. But you have to evaluate the entire team and how it’s functioning.”
Source: http://blogs.bulls.com/2011/01/boozer-not-upset-but-76ers-may-be/

This wasn't even an NBA-forum worthy story when it actually happened. It certainly isn't one two or three days later.