The Chicago Bulls Defense: A breakdown of mishaps and fixes

(Photo by David Berding/Getty Images)
(Photo by David Berding/Getty Images) /
2 of 4
chicago bulls
(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /

Head coach Billy Donovan implemented a “drop coverage” style of pick and roll defense for the Bulls team. In this style of defense, the big (who traditionally is guarding the roller) does not hedge, or help, to defend the ball-handler and will drop back to protect the rim.

However, this style of defense has been detrimental to the Bulls’ ability to defend. The video above shows an example of this style of defense working, but usually, this is not the case.

Typically, the drop coverage defense results in one of two things on defense:

  1. The opposing ball-handler and the roller create a 2v1 on the roll and can either — alley-oop, layup, draw a foul from the defender chasing, etc.
  2. The ball-handler pulls up for an open shot created from the screen and the open space given to the ball-handler by a Bulls’ big man dropping in coverage.

Watch the first play of this video. You can see from the video that after John Collins sets a hard screen on Zach LaVine, Wendell Carter is already dropped back in coverage.

The main act to watch in this play is Trae Young. He dribbles around the screen with LaVine on his back, slams on the brakes, and draws an and-one play.

This is the biggest problem with the Bulls’ defense at the moment.