LOS ANGELES --- The schedule will be fast and furious starting today.
The Bulls will fly to the Bay Area on Christmas night and play the Golden State Warriors on Monday night. Then it's onto Sacramento and back to the Staples Center for a matchup with the resurgent Clippers on Dec. 30.
The schedule grows even more intense in January as 20 game are scheduled. The quick turnarounds mean coach Tom Thibodeau and his assistants must compile information into game plans at a much faster rate. The condensed schedule also puts more pressure on the team's advance scouts to accumulate the information coaches need to assimilate game plans quickly.
"Preparation started in the summer," Thibodeau said. "We anticipated this and what it would be like. We did a lot of prescouting in the offseason. We have it mapped out how we want to approach it. The big thing is the games will be coming quickly and we have to be ready for that."
The Bulls hired Todd Quinter, who has been with the Phoenix Suns since 1986 before resigning last season, as an advance scout. Thibodeau has moved other scouts around in anticipation of the schedule ahead.
"How you prepare for each game is not going to change," Thibodeau said. "For us, we have to formulate the game plan to give to the players so it's clear and concise so they have great clarity in terms of how we want it executed. Our players have done a good job understanding what we're trying to get accomplished out there. Our veteran leadership is outstanding. It's not only from the coaches but the veterans are also leading."
Thibodeau said there's a lot more information available today than there was a decade ago. There's video, reports from live scouts and statistical analysis to consider, just like there was last season. The only difference is the same amount of work must be done in a compressed timeframe.
"All the coaches are assigned different teams to do the prescouts," Thibodeau said. "Everyone will be watching our opponents previous games also. It will be a compilation of things."