Now Jimmy Butler Bites The Dust
The Chicago Bulls simply can't catch a break.
Is it the curse of Michael Jordan? I don't necessarily believe in curses, but ever since The Greatest Basketball Player of All Time decided to take his talents to Washington, the Bulls haven't been the same.
Sure, they are and have been contenders. They overcame Jordan's departure after years of mediocrity, drafted Derrick Rose, and skyrocketed back to a sense of relevance.
We all know Derrick Rose's narrative. As prolific a point guard as he is, Rose simply can't stay healthy enough to stay on the court. And with his most recent injury, there's a massive uncertainty circulating around Chicago as to whether or not Rose will ever return to his true, freakishly atheltic, form.
With Rose ruled out, many questioned whether Chicago could stay in contention. However, with the East being as weak as it is, Chicago was almost certain to still remain competitive.
Now, that hope has almost dissolved.
Their saving grace was the surprisingly rapid improvement of Jimmy Butler. His stifling defense, coupled with a newfound sense of offensive skill, kept hopes alive in Chicago. Butler's been an unbelievable contributer this year in a multitude of ways. Deservingly, he made his first All-Star appearance this year and has been a force throughout this entire season.
And then, poof!
Last night proved disastrous for both Chicago and Butler.
The good news is this injury won't require surgery, but without Butler, Chicago is destined to take a tumble in the standings.
If Rose and Butler make it back, the Bulls will face an uphill battle while trying to redevelop the chemistry they've tried sustaining this entire year. Could be tough, though, with all the personnel fits and starts.
At least Chicago fans can still ride the Blackhawks' winning waves.