By David Schuster–
Carlos Boozer flashed a big smile after practice Monday and for good reason. This was a practice that he actually participated in rather then watch. Almost two months to the day he broke his hand, Boozer was back on the court with his teammates and reported no pain. He’ll practice again on Tuesday, go through the shoot around on Wednesday and then make a decision if he’ll play that evening vs. Orlando. The guess here is that he will play against the Magic on Wednesday and not only play, but start.
Boozer obviously adds another major dimension to a team that has already proven to be very good. With probably the best pick and roll power forward in the league, Derrick Rose just got even more lethal. Now when teams decide to double team Rose he’ll have the option of moving the ball to Boozer who can either go strong to the basket or back up for open jumpers. His addition also makes the Bulls a deeper team as Taj Gibson immediately slides over onto the bench. It also gives Tom Thibodeau the luxury of resting some of his starters who have already logged some heavy minutes. Thibodeau mentioned Luol Deng specifically who at times has moved over to the power forward position.
Boozer will wear a protective wrap on his hand for a short while that has some padding in it to protect the bone that was broken. It resembles those gloves that you see bowlers wear to keep their hands straight. He said his kids get a kick out of it but hopes to have it off very shortly. And you couldn’t disguise the excitement the Bulls major off season acquisition had on his face Monday. Not only is Boozer finally going to get on the court shortly but he’s joining a team that he feels has a legitimate chance to win the Eastern Conference.