Chicago's two-headed point guard tandem
Chicago's two headed point guard- Kirk Hinrich and Derrick Rose.
There are thousands of different styles of playing basketball.
Every player is unique. But there are similarities, and styles that people share.
For the purpose of this article, let’s think of two common styles or types of game that we see often in the point guard spot.
Sometimes you have a point guard who is flashy, has great handles, makes regular highlights, dunks on the big men and is generally a crowd pleaser .
Normally these are the younger guards who still use mostly their athleticism to beat the opponent.
You can also have the slightly quieter point guard who gives up the ball to teammates, who runs the offense, controls the tempo, plays hard defense and knocks down the three every now and again, normally the older veteran player.
And the Chicago Bulls are lucky enough to have one of each.
Derrick Rose, the number one draft pick and a front runner in the R.O.Y race is mostly type A.
Kirk Hinrich, the seventh overall pick from the incredibly deep 2003 draft, would normally apply to type B.
*IMPORTANT POINT*: As I pointed out earlier, basketball players have many different types and styles and do not conform to just one point. I am in no way saying that Derrick Rose is incapable of running an offense or finding his open teammates , much in the same way that Kirk Hinrich is perfectly capable of making the big plays.
I'm merely focusing on their usual style.
(Also, sometimes you get guys like Chris Paul or Steve Nash, who are bo th )
After missing much of the season so far with a thumb injury, Hinrich has returned with his starting guard spot understandably taken by thriving rookie Rose. Hinrich has looked comfortable in coming off the bench for the Bulls.
In just his second game back, Kirk posted a very positive stat line of 12 points, six assists, five rebounds and three three-pointers.
Derrick Rose is of course the future of the Bulls and the start of what they are trying to build around, now that
Ben Gordon has fallen out of favor with management and Luol Deng has been riddled with injuries much of the last two seasons.
His playing style is electric; he is already improving his game from what we saw at the beginning of the season.
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There is little doubt that he has all-star potential.
The Chicago Bulls are fighting to make the Eastern Conference playoffs but unfortunately other teams have been winning of late.
The Sixers have won 7 in a row and are 8-2 in their last ten; they have raced up from the 10th spot in the East to steal the 7th seed from the New Jersey Nets.
The Bucks have been gaining confidence and have maintained the 8th spot for the last few weeks, allowing the Bulls to drop back to the tenth spot.
However the Bulls have given us a glimpse of the team they can be, specifically, in the win against the Cleveland Cavaliers. You can never really stop LeBron James, but the team did play some great defense, and Luol Deng was able to hit some clutch three-pointers, while Derrick Rose converted on a crucial 3-point play.
But back to the point, going forward; wi th Hinrich back in the lineup now have a two-headed point guard combo they can work wi th .
Put in Rose, for a quick scoring spurt, to get the team running up and down, and to inspire a little fear in the back of the opposing point guards mind.
Or put in Hinrich, to slow down and control things a little, perhaps get Deng or Gordon more involved, if a turnover is the last thing the team needs, Hinrich is a good idea.
I also believe that Hinrich can teach Rose a lot of things on the court. Although it’s a little premature to call a 6 th year player a veteran, Hinrich is experience and as a coach's son has a high basketball IQ.
He can transfer this knowledge to the young Rose, which would improve his game immensely. Hinrich can tutor Rose while being his backup.
Besides this, if Bulls coach Vinny Del Negro wanted to go small, he could easily place Hinrich at the two guard. He may be able to do the same wi th Rose in years to come, once his jump shot range extends and becomes more consistent.
Beyond that, the Bulls do not want to wear Rose out, as often happens with rookies adjusting to the 82 game season.
This is especially important if they manage to secure a playoff spot, therefore Hinrich will be able to share the rookie's minutes, Del Negro will not feel so pressured to use Rose constantly, as O.J Mayo may be forced to do in Memphis.
Rose and Hinrich are surely both threats offensively, can handle the ball and both make the great pass. They now have the luxury of having a quality guard on the court almost all the time now, something that even the title contenders don't own.
For all the talk of trading Hinrich in the offseason , I believe that would be a very foolish move as he has a lot more to offer the team than the average fan believes.
Of course, only he can really prove this. I only hope that he remains comfortable in his bench role and acknowledges that Rose is the star, the attraction to the fans and that the day is coming where it shall be Rose's team.
The Chicago Bulls are still a long way from their brilliant season two years ago, but they have made great steps to move away from last years debacle.
Making the playoffs, even if it results in a sweep, would be a great confidence booster to the team and the fans.
The two-headed point guard combo are going to a huge part of this, and though the team still has many problems to solve, they can at least rest easy that they have talent at the point guard position.
By Joe Buckley
Pro-Basketball Fans staff-writer
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