Photo Credit: Keith Allison (Flickr.com)
Chicago Bulls’ center Joakim Noah is quietly having a top-notch season.
Noah averages just about the same amount of points and rebounds. He scores 11.9 points while grabbing 11.2 boards per game. That’s a double-double almost every night. Noah is recording double-doubles against high-quality teams. He scored 11.3 points and got 10.3 rebounds in three games against the New York Knicks. His outstanding game against the Miami Heat was even better, grabbing 12 boards and scoring 13.
Noah’s performances against top teams have earned him his first All-Star bid. It’s well deserved, even though he might not play due to an injured right foot. Noah told reporters after Sunday’s practice (via ESPN.com) that he’s willing to miss the game to benefit the team.
Noah is definitely an example of a player who is willing to give his all to the team.
The Bulls cannot afford Noah to miss any more games. Noah suffered the same injury on his left foot during the 2009-10 season. He missed 18 games and played through the pain. Noah has opted to rest and let it heal this time instead of playing through pain.
Noah missed three games before returning for 123-98 loss to Denver on Feb. 7. During those prior three games, the Bulls went 1-2, defeating the Atlanta Hawks, but losing to the Brooklyn Nets and Indiana Pacers. Both the Nets and Pacers outrebounded the Bulls by more than 15 rebounds each, proving how valuable Noah is on the court for the Bulls.
Though the Bulls are already playing without Derrick Rose, they aren’t struggling on the court. Noah is the huge reason why. He has evolved into one of the best centers today.
Noah isn’t a scoring machine, but he makes his playing time productive almost recording a double-double while averaging 38:12 minutes every single night.
Keeping in mind that he hasn’t even peaked yet, Joakim Noah truly has progressed into a dominant center for the Bulls.
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