Sunday smorgasbord: You know it’s a Chicago Bulls blowout — the victorious variety — when coach Tom Thibodeau has no one on his roster with more than 28 minutes played. You know it’s a blowout for the Bulls when they could have gone scoreless in the fourth quarter and still have won. Such was the case Saturday night in a 111-80 triumph at home against the New York Knicks. Pau Gasol led the Bulls in minutes with 28. The Bulls had 27 fourth-quarter points, as did the Knicks. Not that defeating the Knicks counts as a major accomplishment. But it does count as a victory in the standings.
* Speaking of Gasol (18 points), he had a game-high 12 rebounds and game-high plus-27 during his time on the floor. He also had three of the starting five’s four turnovers. Meaning three players had none. Always knew some day your humble correspondent would have a chance to show off some arithmetic skills. And this is about the extent of such skills.
* Speaking of efficiency during his minutes played, Nikola Mirotic had a game-high 24 points in 26 minutes off the bench. He averaged 20.5 in March games.
* As for inefficiency, the Knicks lost their 60th game to set a franchise record for a season. In case anyone was wondering why former Bulls coach Phil Jackson had no interest in coaching the Knicks and ended up as their president instead. Much easier to stay out of the line of fire in the front office than on the bench. Jackson has done a fantastic job of putting the Knicks on the path to having the No. 1 pick in the NBA draft.
* Maybe yours truly should watch the Kentucky-Notre Dame basketball game again. Or at least the postgame remarks Wildcats coach John Calipari made after his top-seeded team’s 68-66 victory over the Irish to reach the Final Four of the NCAA tournament. Calipari briefly bemoaned the fact that his players made freshman mistakes. To be fair, most of his players are freshman. And many of his players leave the Kentucky campus after one year to play professionally. Something says the line forming to be sympathetic to Calipari’s plight will be short, if there is one at all.
* With Wisconsin having clinched a Final Four berth (in an 85-78 victory against Arizona) Saturday and Michigan State having a chance to do likewise Sunday against Louisville. Meaning the Big Ten Conference could be the best-represented league in the Final Four. In case anyone was wondering whether good coaching and experienced players mean anything.
* Not being a college basketball expert (as well as just about everything else when it comes to being an expert), would anyone be rooting for either team in a Duke-Kentucky matchup (other than students, alums and family)? Or would most folks merely be rooting against one of the teams?
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