Boozer keying Bulls' hot streak


Boozer keying Bulls' hot streak

Its hard not to notice Carlos Boozers play over the last couple of weeks.

Over the last five games, the 10-year veteran is averaging 23.2 points and 12 rebounds, while shooting 52 percent from the field.

Hes playing very well, coach Tom Thibodeau said. Were feeding off him. Him getting established in the post is very important for us. Hes making a lot of good plays and his teammates are doing a good job of searching him out.

His 27-point, 12-rebound performance in last Fridays win over Miami might be one of his best performances on the season, considering the opponent.

Never one to take personal credit, Boozer was quick to deflect the attention away from himself onto the overall improved play of the team.

Im just playing off my teammates, Boozer said. Were trying to step it up a little bit and get some more wins. We had a tough couple of weeks in 2012 and new year, we have a couple of resolutions and the biggest one is to get more wins.

While the team has responded well after a disappointing loss to Charlotte on New Years Eve, everyone has been impressed with Boozers play, even if its with a little light ribbing.

I be teasing Booze a lot, Nate Robinson jokingly said, speaking on Boozers jumpshot, which hes a fan of. I tell him youre the only big two-guard Ive seen. He needs to be in the three-point contest during All-Star weekend.

Booze has been doing a hell of a job. As of late, hes been doing a lot more hustling, getting on the ground, getting dirty and thats what we need him to do; continue to play, be aggressive on offense. Hes been doing a way better job on defense, getting loose balls and hustling. Its been great and thats the player that we need him to be.

Five Things to Watch: Bulls visit Bucks in final regular season meeting on CSN

Five Things to Watch: Bulls visit Bucks in final regular season meeting on CSN

Watch as the Bulls take on the Milwaukee Bucks today on CSN and streaming live on Coverage begins at 2 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. Can the Bulls get one on the Bucks? The Bulls are 0-3 against the Bucks so far this season and it hasn't been pretty. The Bucks have won the previous three meetings all by double digits and by an average of 19 points. The youth and athleticism of the Bucks has been a tough matchup for the Bulls so far.

2. Containing Giannis. There may be no stopping Giannis Antetokounmpo, but the Bulls can at least try to contain him. Antetokounmpo is averaging 23 points and nearly nine rebounds per game. In three games against the Bulls this year he has averaged 29 points, 10 rebounds and 7.3 assists per contest. If the Bulls are to stay in the game, they will need to keep him to numbers lower than that.

3. Playoff implications. The Bulls playoff hopes are still alive with nine games remaining, but things are looking a bit bleak. The Bulls are a game and a half out of the eighth playoff spot, but only 3.5 games behind two teams tied for the No. 5 seed, the Bucks and the Atlanta Hawks. The Bucks have won three in a row to improve their position.

4. Mirotic on a roll. Streaky play is nothing new to Nikola Mirotic, but he's on a good run currently. After scoring a season-high 28 points on Wednesday against the Pistons, Mirotic followed that up with 15 points against the 76ers. Since missing three straight games earlier this month, Mirotic has scored in double figures in five of the last seven games and is averaging 15.6 points during that stretch.

5. Beginning of a tough stretch. The Bulls' playoff hopes could be made or broken in the next three games. After taking on the Bucks, which occupy a playoff spot, the Bulls host two more Eastern Conference playoff teams in Cleveland and Atlanta. The Bulls need to string some wins together and this is not an easy stretch to do so against.

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Former Bulls center Joakim Noah suspended 20 games for violating NBA's anti-drug policy

Former Bulls center Joakim Noah suspended 20 games for violating NBA's anti-drug policy

The NBA announced Saturday that it has suspended former Bulls and current Knicks center Joakim Noah for 20 games without pay for violating the league's anti-drug policy.

He tested positive for an over-the-counter supplement called selective androgen receptor modulator LGD-4033, which is prohibited under the current collective bargaining agreement but would not have been under the new CBA starting next year, according to ESPN's Marc Spears.

It was announced in February that Noah would miss the remainder of the season with a left knee injury. His suspension will carry over into the 2017-18 campaign with only 10 games left this year.

Noah averaged 5.0 points per game and 8.8 rebounds per game in 46 games in his first of a four-year, $72 million contract with the Knicks.