Chat with Nick Friedell
Welcome to ESPNChicago.com! On Friday, Nick Friedell stops by to chat about the NBA season as well as the Chicago Bulls.
Friedell covers the Chicago Bulls for both ESPN Radio 1000 and ESPNChicago.com.
Send your questions now and join the chat Friday at 3 p.m. CT/4 p.m. ET!
Nick Friedell (4:05 PM)
Let's get this chat rolling guys ... I just got back from the Berto.
Throughout the series, which duo do you think the Bulls will have a tougher time containing? Gortat and Nene, or Wall and Beal.
Nick Friedell (4:06 PM)
Wall and Beal. They are fast and athletic. I think Gibson and Noah will be up for the challenge against Nene and Gortat.
Mike (Washington DC)
What do the Wizards have to do defensively to beat the Bulls?
Nick Friedell (4:07 PM)
I think we're going to see a lot of trapping of D.J. Augustin. They know he is an offensive difference maker for the Bulls and they know they'll have to slow him down in order to win the series.
omar [via mobile]
Will Noah get defensive player of the year.
Nick Friedell (4:07 PM)
I think he will.
How does coach Thibs get all of his players to buy into his system and his approach? I know a lot of coaches with his demeanor tend to lose their players. Thibs appears to have their undivided support.
Nick Friedell (4:09 PM)
The key with Thibs is no matter how often players may get frustrated with him they know he puts in more work than anybody. They know he always has the team's best interest at heart.
Hi Nick, do you think Jimmer will get any significant playing time in the playoffs?
Nick Friedell (4:13 PM)
No, I don't. Unless somebody gets injured. Jimmer's best chance to contribute will be next year if he re-signs with the Bulls.
As I look at the matchup between the Bulls and Wizards, it is starting to appear that the Bulls must win Game 1 in order to demoralize the Wizards otherwise I think John Wall and Co could come out on top. In your opinion, how important is winning game 1 against the Wizards?
Nick Friedell (4:14 PM)
I don't think it's that important. The Bulls dropped Game 1 at home to a young Hawks team a few years ago and still won the series in six games. I think they'll be fine either way.
Nick, who's going to be the X-factor for the Bulls in this first-round playoff series?
Nick Friedell (4:16 PM)
Jimmy Butler. He's got to prove he can be solid defensively -- and still knock down 12-15 points a night. The spotlight will be on him and he's got to find a way to slow down Bradley Beal if the Bulls want to win.
Good afternoon Nick and Happy Friday to you. I'm just trying to wrap my head around this. D.Rose won't play in May/hopefully June but WILL play in July/August for the Olympic squad? Help me understand please. Would he take a huge hit PR-wise in Chicago if this happens?
Nick Friedell (4:18 PM)
No, I don't think so. I think the Bulls don't want to run the risk of having Rose come back and try to fit in with a team that's learned to play without him all year. The Bulls want him to play for Team USA and see where he's at in a few months -- then prepare himself to get into a rhythm with his Bulls teammates.
In this age of championships or bust...how far do the Bulls have to get to consider this season a success?
Nick Friedell (4:20 PM)
To me, I believe this season is already a success for the Bulls given what happened earlier in the year. Even if they lose to the Wizards this season should be viewed as a success because of the obstacles they overcame.
Paul (Oak Park)
Assuming that the Bulls win this round and that the Pacers win their own series against the Hawks, how can the Bulls beat the Pacers? What are the chances of the Bulls advancing to the ECF?
Nick Friedell (4:21 PM)
I think they're pretty good assuming they stay healthy. It will be a tough, physical series -- but I think the Bulls believe in themselves more than the Pacers do.
Hi Nick, do you see any of the Bulls recent pickups (James, Brewer, Amundson) having any impact in the series?
Nick Friedell (4:24 PM)
No. Brewer has a chance to play -- but none of those guys will have a major impact.
Don (Syracuse) [via mobile]
Nick, what bench player (besides Taj or D.J.) do you see as a possible x factor in the post season this year? I mean there could be foul trouble or an injury and someone has to be ready to step up.
Nick Friedell (4:26 PM)
Don, Good question. Truth is, I don't think there's another guy who could have much of an impact because I don't think Thibs is going to use his bench much at all -- aside from Taj or D.J.
Edgar (West Pullman)
Which two teams, in your opinion, will be eventually slotted in the NBA Finals?
Nick Friedell (4:27 PM)
Heat vs. Spurs.
Nick, How about those Blackhawks last night? You think they can bounce back form that?
Nick Friedell (4:28 PM)
I do not care about hockey. But if you do -- you should read my man Scotty Powers' articles on the Hawks.
Jimmie (Wisconsin) [via mobile]
Nick, do you think the Bulls could beat the heat without D Wade
Nick Friedell (4:28 PM)
Peter (Melbourne, Australia) [via mobile]
How do the bulls stop John Wall getting to the rim with his quickness? Is his former mentor Hinrich quick enough?
Nick Friedell (4:30 PM)
Peter, Thibs talked about that today. He said they are going to have to play team defense against them -- because the reality is nobody is quick enough to guard him one on one. What he means is everybody will keep an eye on where he's going and they'll try to limit his explosiveness towards the rim. They can't let the Wizards get out on the break and into the open floor.
Could Boozer's usage go down for the playoffs? If his minutes are cut could he become a distraction?
Nick Friedell (4:32 PM)
I'm not sure how much lower they can go -- he's going to play the first quarter and the third as long as he doesn't get into foul trouble.
Miguel (Tampa, FL. )
I know people forget about Carlos Boozer sometimes but I think if he can have a good playoff run the Bulls really have a good chance of going for in the Playoffs. What do you think?
Nick Friedell (4:34 PM)
I really don't think he'll be able to have a big impact in this series. He's not playing heavy minutes anymore and he usually struggles against big frontcourts.
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
How Far do you think that the Chicago Bulls will go in the NBA Playoffs?
Nick Friedell (4:36 PM)
If I were betting on it today -- I think this team faces the Heat in the Eastern Conference finals.
Nick Friedell (4:37 PM)
Guys, I am out of here. Got to get down to the studio for Waddle and Silvy. I will talk to everybody next week from D.C. If you're at a game come over and say hello.