Bulls hopeful for strong All-Star presence this season

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Bulls hopeful for strong All-Star presence this season

The fan votes for All-Star starters were announced last week, and on Thursday the coaches selections for the reserves will be made public as well.

Luol Deng, Carlos Boozer and Joakim Noah warrant consideration for their play that has helped keep the Bulls steady in the absence of Derrick Rose, and coach Tom Thibodeau is hopeful that all three will be headed to Houston next month.

I hope all three make it, Thibodeau said. I think we have three guys who are very deserving.

Thibodeau is not one to bombard his fellow coaches with phone calls, e-mails and gifts in hopes that theyll select any of his players. Instead, he feels that the play of any player, along with team success, dictates the nod.

I dont get wrapped up in that stuff because its political and a waste of time, Thibodeau said. If someone sent me something, I wouldnt even look at it. When they ask me to vote, I try to look at the team success, how the players fit in and theyre all tough choices. You can make the case for a lot of guys. There are a lot of guys that are deserving and its very close. So you try to put a little more thought on team success. Also, how consistently a player has done it. Often times, it takes a couple years to get there. I thought Luol shouldve made it two years ago and he finally made it last year.

Deng could make his second consecutive All-Star appearance if he gets the green light. Carlos Boozer has appeared in two All-Star games as a reserve during his tenure with the Utah Jazz. If Joakim Noah gets voted in, this would mark his first appearance in an All-Star game.

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.

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