The roster of the Chicago Bulls got a complete face-lift over the summer. They lost two of their former guys in Derrick Rose and Joahkim Noah and received a stud in Rajon Rondo and a future hall-of-famer in Dwyane Wade. Many people don’t know what to expect from this team during the upcoming season. And one question is what will the starting lineup be — preferably, who starts at the power forward position? Fred Hoiberg believes the position is up for grabs:
Hoiberg offers no hints as to whether Taj or Mirotic will start at 4. "It's an open competition." Would think Niko's shooting gives him edge
— Sean Highkin (@highkin) September 27, 2016
The pick of either Taj Gibson or Nikola Mirotic is interesting to me. Many believe Taj Gibson deserves the starting role due to his consistent hard work and effort off the bench, but I believe strategically, there’s no question Mirotic should start.
The Chicago Bulls struggle behind the three-point line and will continue to struggle during this upcoming season. A proposed starting lineup of Rondo, Butler, Wade, Gibson, and Lopez provides no outside shooting besides Butler. They were ranked in the bottom ten in both three pointers made and three pointers attempted last season and as we know in today’s game, you have to have an outside threat to be successful.
Nikola Mirotic is your guy to start at the power forward position. He’s slightly under in the rebounding and blocking categories than Taj Gibson but he gives you the ability to spread the floor. Fred Hoiberg has a group of guys in Rondo, Butler, and Wade who likes to slash to the basket. The last thing he needs is packed paint full of defenders.
Taj Gibson is more of a mid-range, back-to-the-basket kind of guy where his defender can easily help on drives to the basket, whereas Mirotic is behind the three-point line and he’s someone that you really don’t want to help off of. He shot just under 40% from three which tells you that he’s fully capable of knocking them down. I’m not sure if Fred Hoiberg is just trying to motivate his guys by stating the position is open for competition but this decision is a no-brainer to me.