It took a few different countries, the largest city in America and a little bit more to turn Joakim Noah into an NBA all-star. So after being named to the team for the first time, Noah took to Twitter for a stream of thanks to people from his past.
“To be considered an all-star is an unbelievable honor,” Noah said at Friday’s shootaround. “A lot of people helped me along the way, so it’s definitely a lot of people to thank. A lot of people had to make sacrifices in order to get me where I’m at today so I just wanted to thank them.”
Noah lived in Paris, France, and New York City while growing up. He added a little self-reflection when giving appreciation to the Bulls, who chose him with the ninth pick of the 2007 draft out of Florida.
“I wouldn’t be here without my teammates and my coaches, and this organization, they believed in me,” Noah added. “I came in as a young, loud, probably a little immature and with a big mouth. They always believed in me, through it all, through the good times and the hard times and I just want to say that I appreciate them.”
Deng hits and misses:
The Bulls’ other all-star, forward Luol Deng, missed his fourth straight game with a right hamstring strain. Deng felt there’s a chance to could return Saturday at Washington.
This is Deng’s second straight all-star selection. What’s interesting is he had better numbers (18.8 ppg, 7.1 rpg) during the 2006-07 season and wasn’t picked from a team that won 49 games.
“I’m happy for myself and the team,” Deng said Friday. “You really don’t get to be an all-star unless your team is doing great. It says a lot about the team and my teammates. To be able to have the record we have has a lot to do with it.”
Bulls vice president of basketball operations John Paxson provided an update on Derrick Rose’s return and the trade deadline during a radio appearance Friday.
“We can’t sit here today and say (Rose) is going to be back in three weeks or after the all-star break,” Paxson said on ESPN 1000-AM. “Those things are a hope, but his body is going to tell us.
“We don’t want to bring him back and then have a setback because he wasn’t totally ready. We want this to be a progression where he comes back, he starts to play and every week he gets better and feels better.”
A significant move before the Feb. 21 trade deadline figures to be a longshot since the Bulls can’t take much salary back in return.
“We’re not in a position to take on any real salary so we’re kind of limited in what we can do,” Paxson added. “We’ve had some ugly games this year and that’s kind of who we are right now. But we do grind it out and play hard. ... Our (deadline) move hopefully will be bringing Derrick back into the fold.”
Board work pays off:
Golden State went the first 7½ minutes of the second quarter without grabbing a rebound Friday. The Bulls hit 11 of 17 shots to open the quarter and secured all 6 offensive rebounds. At halftime, the Bulls held a 29-12 rebounding edge.Copyright © 2014 Paddock Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.