Bulls Coach Tom Thibodeau stepped to the forefront of the Bulls' 120-97 loss to the Houston Rockets.
They completely outplayed us from the start, Thibodeau said. My job is to have them ready. Obviously, we were not ready. That part is on me. Having them ready and playing hard, I have to have them ready. In the last three games, they have put up 120 points. Obviously, we did not understand and I did not do enough of a job delivering the message of what we were going to have to do to be successful.
As honorable as him taking the blame for his team falling behind as many as 35 during the game, the truth is the Bulls have struggled to play with the edge they showcased during the first three quarters in last Fridays win over the New York Knicks.
You can look at the fourth quarter of that game in which they allowed the Knicks to score 45 points, erasing a 24-point lead as the start of the Bulls poor play during the last two games, which have been of blow out fashion.
The Rockets outraced them in the open court, outscoring them 31-8 in fast break points, demolished them 62-32 in points in the paint and outrebounded them 45-31.
The Bulls typically have responded well after losses in the Thibodeau era and this is the first time theyve lost back-to-back games by double digits during his tenure.
Things can change very quickly in this league, Thibodeau warned. If youre not right and dont have an edge, youre not going to win without the right amount of intensity.
The Bulls roster consists of prideful players and the last thing they were willing to accept was their coach putting the onus on himself because of their effort.
Its on us. It has nothing to do with coach, Nate Robinson said. Coach does a great job in preparing us and getting us ready for the game. Thats all on us. Were not going to let him take the blame on that. Thats on us, we have to do better tomorrow and we will.
The beauty of the NBA schedule is that they will get their chance to correct the issues that have plagued them during this stretch Wednesday in Indiana.