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updated: 2/15/2012 9:05 PM

Bulls' C.J. Watson misses out on NBA 3-point contest

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For the 15th straight year, the Bulls will not send a player to the NBA's 3-point shootout during all-star weekend.

C.J. Watson was hoping to get an invitation, but he slipped from third to eighth in the league in 3-point percentage in the last week or so. He also has a relatively low number of attempts (72).

Through Tuesday's games, Kyle Korver ranked seventh in 3-pointers made and 11th in 3-point percentage, but he was also passed by. Korver participated in the 3-point contest in 2004 and '05, his first two seasons in the league, finishing third and second, but he has not returned.

The shooters in this year's contest include two from the Miami Heat, defending champion James Jones and Mario Chalmers. The other participants are Orlando's Ryan Anderson, Atlanta's Joe Johnson, Minnesota's Kevin Love and New Jersey's Anthony Morrow.

Love, shooting 36.1 percent from 3-point range, and Johnson, 35.6 percent with fewer makes than Korver, are odd choices. Jones won last year, but he has seen his playing time plummet this season.

Thibs shows Lin-terest:

Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau was an assistant at Harvard before jumping to the NBA in 1989 with the expansion Minnesota Timberwolves. So naturally, Thibodeau had some thoughts on Harvard's latest hoops hero, New York guard Jeremy Lin.

"He's in a good situation. I think Mike D'Antoni is a terrific coach and he's used him extremely well," Thibodeau said. "It's a testament to him being ready when he got the opportunity. He made the most of it.

Harvard was ranked in the top 25 this season, but dropped out this week after losing to Princeton.

Bulls support coach:

Several Bulls joked Tuesday about Tom Thibodeau's suitability for his new job as coach of the East all-stars. But they also praised their boss.

"I'm happy. I'm thrilled," Luol Deng said. "Having the best record, the whole coaching staff works so hard. Anytime you want to go to the gym and get shots up, those guys are there for you. I'm just happy for them. They deserve it."

"The whole coaching staff works incredibly hard," Kyle Korver said. "I don't think I've ever been around a harder-working coach in my life. I don't think there's a coach that gets his team more prepared and goes over more detail than we go over every single night. So it's a great honor for him and we're really happy for him."

Bull horns:

Luol Deng posted a career-high 11 assists Tuesday against Sacramento, but he chalked up his playmaking prowess to chance. "It's just luck," he said. "Guys were hitting shots. It's the same game, just my passes went in and other passes didn't." ... The Kings piled up 25 second-chance points Tuesday, a season high for a Bulls opponent. The previous high was 22, also against the Kings on Dec. 29.

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