When Derrick went down and Lu was traded, everyone’s first reaction was how bad this team would be. Everybody’s first reaction was the Bulls should tank! Few people believed. One of the few who night in night out puts every ounce of energy he has in his body in his profession, Joakim Noah believed.
The Bulls now sit 25-25. The 6th seed and only 1 1/2 games out of 3rd place in the conference. They’re 2nd in the entire NBA in points allowed per game, only behind Indiana, all behind the anchor of Jo. 21 out of the last 22 games, Jo has gathered 10 rebounds or more. 14 being double-doubles, and an outstanding 13 of them with 5 or more assists. Chicago has gone 14-8 during that stretch. His month of January alone, was outstanding. Averaging 13.6 points per game, 14.1 rebounds per game, not only 14 boards a night but he didn’t have less than 10 the entire month and 5.8 assists per game. Oh, and 2 blocks a night on the defensive end, shocker.
Jo earned his 2nd All-Star appearance in as many years this past week and it’s well deserving. All he does is work hard and buy into the coaches system. He’s all in on coach Thibs and it’s paid off. Jo does so much for this team. While watching games you’ll often see ‘Point Noah; emerge as he runs fast breaks for the Bulls on occasion. And do it successfully. He’s 4th in the NBA in defensive win shares and he’s 5th in defensive rating, 6th in total rebounds, 4th on the offensive glass.
Numbers don’t do Jo-No the full justice. He’s the epitome of a team player and a guy who wants nothing more to do whatever he can to help his team win and win championships. Whatever happens in the second half of the season good or bad, Jo will be in the middle of everything, doing anything he can, to help the Bulls succeed.