Joakim Noah was critical of the effort shown by the Bulls following the team’s loss to the Miami Heat on Sunday, stating that the team’s intensity should have been higher.
“I don’t care about missed shots,” Noah said in an interview with ESPN’s Nick Friedell. “When we play the Miami Heat, our intensity has to be high the whole time. To me, that’s what’s disappointing.”
The teams were tied at halftime, before the Heat outscored the Bulls 25-12 in the third quarter. Although Noah stated that he wasn’t disappointed in missed shots, some players stood out with poor shooting performances. D.J. Augustin took 10 shots from the field and missed all of them, including five three-pointers. Tony Snell also shot poorly, making only two of his 10 shots. Noah shot the best on the team, making seven of his 11 shots. Another big component to the loss was the team’s 19 turnovers, compared to the Heat’s eight. In points off turnovers, the Heat dominated the Bulls, scoring 22 compared to three for the Bulls.
Even with the loss, the Bulls sit in fourth-place in the non-competitive Eastern Conference. Losing to the Heat is not a major problem, but if your best player is calling out the team’s effort, problems may arise soon enough.
Although the team obviously does not have the star-power of the Heat, the Bulls have always given the team fits due to their aggressive play and ability to keep their stars in check. Even without LeBron James in the line-up Sunday, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade combined for 51 points and both players had 10 rebounds.
While the Heat played without LeBron, the Bulls were also missing a major piece in Jimmy Butler. Butler sat out due to bruised ribs. Any edge the Bulls may have had thanks to LeBron’s absence was lost when Butler was announced as out.