During tonight's game against the Celtics at the United Center, it's likely that Tom Thibodeau will give his team a mandate above all others.
Stop the ball.
When the Bulls lost to the Celtics 95-91 on Sunday, Boston had 33 fast break points. Thibodeau knows Boston's fast break catalyst is point guard Rajon Rondo, who had a triple-double Sunday when scored 32 points, grabbed 10 rebounds and dished out 15 assists.
"They pushed the ball hard," Thibodeau said. "Their bigs ran well. Rondo is an offense into himself. He can push the ball, he can make something out of nothing. They are unique in the sense that they have some bigs that are coming off their bench now that run extremely well. They have some smalls that trail the break great."
Lately the Bulls have struggled on the defensive end, most recently allowing 115 points in Tuesday's win over the Kings.
"Defensively I think we have to play a lot better," Thibodeau said. "Our defense has been OK most of the year but the last two games it's not where we want it to be."
Celtics forward Kevin Garnett missed last night's game in Detroit when he was a late scratch due to a hip pointer. He's a game-time decision tonight.