Is Brewer ready for the starting role?

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Is Brewer ready for the starting role?

We all know that the Bulls are in need of and should pursue a shooting guard, but what about Ronnie Brewer?

Brewer wants a shot at the starting role, considering he showed up to training camp healthier than last year when he suffered with a sore hamstring.

"Last year, I was a little unhealthy," Brewer told the Chicago Tribune. "Not that I felt like it changed the season because I feel we had a great season and Keith (Bogans) did a phenomenal job, and I did pretty well with the role I had. But now no matter who they bring in or if they bring Keith back, it's going to be a fight in training camp. We're going to push each other and make each other better at that two spot."

But Brewer wants to be No. 1. Can he handle it? He played a big part in the Bulls' bench mob, but what are his numbers like? Not too far off from his fellow guards.

Brewer averaged 6.2 points, 3.2 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game last season. Bogans averaged 4.4 points, 1.8 rebounds and 1.2 assists while Kyle Korver averaged 8.3 points, 1.8 rebounds and 1.5 assists.

See why we need to upgrade?

Whether Tom Thibodeau thinks he can handle it or not, Brewer is going to put up a fight.

"Whatever we've got to do to win, I'm all about that," he told the Chicago Tribune. "But me as a player, I've got to do everything I possibly can to put myself in a situation where I can go out there and contribute. "

This is when we dip into his free agent competition. The Bulls are ready to shop and Brewer will have to work hard to match up to the possible shooting guards available.

Restricted free agent Arron Afflalo averaged 12.6 points, 3.6 rebounds and 2.4 assists while shooting 49.8 percent from the field and 42 percent from the arc. Then we go to Sacramento Kings restricted free agent Marcus Thornton who averages 12.8 points, 3.5 rebounds and 1.8 assists, shooting 45 percent from the field and 36 percent from the arc.

Already looking better...

Jason Richardson and Caron Butler are also options but Butler, who was at the Berto Center with the Bulls Thursday, is coming off knee surgery. He averaged 15 points, 4.1 rebounds and 1.8 assists, shooting 45 percent from the field and 43.1 percent from the arc.

It's a nice wish, but I feel like Brewer may need some more time. The Bulls will have their eyes open for players bought out with the amnesty clause such as Brandon Roy, Rip Hamilton and Ben Gordon. They'll be bringing in shooting guards the next few days as the free agent frenzy begins Dec. 9.

As for Brewer, "If my number is called, I will be ready," he said. "I feel like Thibs can feel confident wherever he puts me in the game."
Do you think Brewer can handle the starting role? Who do you want to see the Bulls pick up as a shooting guard?

Five Things to Watch: Bulls try to snap skid against Spurs on CSN

Five Things to Watch: Bulls try to snap skid against Spurs on CSN

Watch as the Bulls take on the Spurs tonight on CSN and streaming live on CSNChicago.com, the only place where you can get the hometown call from Neil and Stacey.

Coverage begins at 8 p.m. with Bulls Pregame Live. Then stick around after the final buzzer to watch Bulls Postgame Live for highlights and analysis.

Click here to watch the game or download the NBC Sports App, your home for live streaming coverage of the Bulls.

FIVE THINGS TO WATCH

1. Attempting to end perfection. The Spurs have been absolutely electric outside of San Antonio this season, winning each of their first 13 road games to begin the year. That's the second longest streak in NBA history, and the Bulls have actually lost two of three at home. The Bulls will be home underdogs as the Spurs look to make it 14 in a row. The good news is the Bulls have defeated the Spurs at home each of the last two seasons.

2. Battle of the two-way studs. There's a real argument to be made that Thursday's matchup will tout the two best two-way players in the NBA. Kawhi Leonard, the two-time reigning Defensive Player of the Year, is having his best offensive season to date, averaging 24.5 points on 46 percent shooting, 1.9 triples, and averaging nearly 91 percent from the free-throw line. Expect Jimmy Butler and Leonard to be on each other's rear most of the night in what should be one of the most fun 1-on-1 matchups in the NBA.

3. Questions at the point. For the Spurs, Tony Parker is questionable to play with a knee injury. If he can't go, it would be Nico Laprovittola and Patty Mills running the point. For the Bulls, Rajon Rondo is coming off a pair of ugly performances in Bulls' losses to the Mavericks and Pistons (and his suspension against the Blazers). Someone needs to step up at the point, and it could decide Thursday night's winner.

4. Pau returns to the UC. Though it didn't result in much success, Pau Gasol enjoyed two highly successful seasons in Chicago. The stat-stuffer was named an All-Star in both seasons, averaging 17.6 points, 11.4 rebounds and 3.4 assists in 150 games. He's now in San Antonio, filling Tim Duncan's role in the starting lineup. And though his numvers are down from a year ago, he's still capable of putting up numbers, especially against a Bulls' interior that has struggled of late.

5. Getting Doug McDermott back. Dougie McBuckets has been activated to the Bulls roster, and not a moment too soon. Since McDermott suffered a concussion on Nov. 12, the Bulls bench ranks 26th in 3-pointers per game (2.5) and 30th in 3-point field-goal percentage (23.5 percent). Getting McDermott back, even in a small role as he gets his legs under him, will be a major factor against a Spurs team whose offense continues to heat up in December.

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Bulls: Rajon Rondo calls incident with assistant coach 'part of the game'

Bulls: Rajon Rondo calls incident with assistant coach 'part of the game'

AUBURN HILLS, MICH—Rajon Rondo almost made it to the quarter mark of the season without incident, but his frustrations got the better of him in Dallas last weekend in a situation with Bulls assistant coach Jim Boylen.

He returned from his one-game suspension in a light mood, but didn’t take things lightly when addressing questions from the media after the Bulls’ 102-91 loss to Detroit.

Rondo admitted that he feels so strongly about things that he doesn’t let them go as easily as he should, which could have been the case with Boylen. Rondo threw a towel after an exchange with Boylen during the Bulls’ blowout loss to the Mavericks.

“That’s a good way to put it. Me as a player, a point guard, I have to handle a situation better,” Rondo said. “But when I feel a certain way, I’m gonna speak on it. My whole thing is always for the betterment of the team.

“If it comes off wrong or a certain way I’ll try to work on that. But for the most part I’m not a selfish individual, I try to do what’s best for the team, try to watch film with my teammates. That’s just part of the game, who I am.”

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When asked if he actually threw a towel at Boylen, Rondo quipped, “You gotta look at the film,” and tried to downplay the situation as best he could, noting the timing of the event in question.

He apologized to the coaching staff and his teammates and believes there won’t be lasting effects, although the Bulls are in the midst of a three-game losing streak.

“Hopefully it’ll be the last three-game losing streak,” Rondo said. “It’s about how you handle adversity. We usually handle it well as far as bouncing back.”

Calling the incident “part of the game,” Rondo didn’t want to address specifics but given his history of instances such as these in Boston, Dallas and Sacramento, this one makes it a little harder to shake the reputation of being difficult to deal with.

“I have a good relationship with my team and I take pride in being a great teammate,” Rondo said. “I think we’re still on the same page. When you lose, things get blown out of proportion. When you win, it covers everything up. So we have to get back to winning basketball.”

His teammates have been supportive both behind the scenes and publicly, and were happy to have him back despite not being able to quell the losing streak.

“It was good. That's our starting point guard. We need veteran guys on this team,” Bulls guard Dwyane Wade said. “We need our bodies. He's our leader today so when we got down early he was the one who kept talking to us defensively. He's so smart out there on the floor, takes certain things away, get out in open transition. The reason we got back in the game, he did a good job of leading us in those moments.”