Can the Chicago Bulls get over their Paris trip quick enough to defeat the Atlanta Hawks and the Indiana Pacers in their next two games?
The trip to Paris was a great time, but now it's time to buckle down and find consistency. The Chicago Bulls have a stretch of crucial games coming up, and they will need to ride the momentum from their Paris trip if they are going to climb up the standings and into the playoff picture.
DeMar DeRozan knows it.
"I said something to the guys the other day: ‘Cmon, this is the time,'" DeRozan said. "And it’s on us. We have to show how much we want it.
Back from France
The team spent most of last week in the "City of Lights" seeing the sights before defeating the Detroit Pistons 126-108. Back in sweet home Chicago, the Bulls used most of the weekend to be at their practice facility, trying to fight off the jet lag and any other fatigue from all the Paris festivities.
With two straight wins in their pocket, the Bulls now have an opportunity to gain some momentum and leapfrog two teams that are right in front of them in the standings—the Atlanta Hawks, who they play on Tuesday, and the Indiana Pacers, who the Bulls face on Wednesday.
Head coach Billy Donovan said with the team now at full strength (only without Lonzo Ball and Javonte Green, of course), they have to play with consistency and execute.
“We’ve done some good things, but I say it all the time: It’s just the consistency part,” Donovan said . “That’s what we have to continue to work towards.”
Consistent and solid play has eluded the Bulls this season, as they have regularly followed impressive wins with subpar efforts that leave fans scratching their heads. That's why this upcoming stretch of games is so important for the Bulls, as a good showing could be just what they need to get over the hump and into contention.
Time to pick up the pace
Back in action for Thursday's game in Paris, DeMar DeRozan showed no negative effects of the quad injury that sidelined him for three games. Now fully recovered, Deebo is rallying the troops to pick up the pace.
We have to show how much we want it. Every single game from here on out is basically like a do-or-die. And not to look at it like it’s pressure or a bad thing. It’s an exciting thing," DeRozan said.
The Bulls have a chance to make something happen with their upcoming schedule, which features road games against bottom dwelling Eastern Conference teams Charlotte and Orlando. If the team can stay hot, they could climb into the playoff picture and make a statement. For now, the Bulls need to build on their experience from Paris and continue delivering wins as they look to make a run for the postseason.
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