With a day to reflect, coach Tom Thibodeau felt he might have shuffled the lineup too much in Sunday's 99-85 loss to Detroit.
With Joakim Noah and Marco Belinelli back in action Sunday, while Luol Deng sat out with a hip injury, the Bulls started Kirk Hinrich and Nate Robinson in the backcourt, with Jimmy Butler, Noah and Carlos Boozer. Belinelli came off the bench.
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"It was an unusual game," Thibodeau said Monday. "In hindsight, I would have done some things differently. We made a lot of changes, probably too many changes in terms of units together. So it wasn't very smooth. I probably could have minimized it doing something different."
The Bulls got off to a decent start, leading 18-7 in the first quarter. But Detroit went ahead early in the second quarter and slowly pulled away, ending an 18-game losing streak against the Bulls.
"We had two guys coming in, one guy going out and then I changed two units," Thibodeau added. "So it's hard to get your rhythm. Although whatever that unit is, we've got to find that rhythm quickly. When you're dealing with change, it's how quickly you can adapt to that change that really matters. I'm expecting us to do a lot better (Tuesday against Toronto)."
Thibodeau felt that starting Robinson messed up the chemistry of the second group. So he might consider starting Belinelli or Daequan Cook at shooting guard against Toronto. Belinelli figures to be on a minutes limit, which complicates things.
Nazr ready if needed:
If Joakim Noah needs more time off to rest his sore feet, veteran Nazr Mohammed said he's willing to resume the 30-minutes per game role he assumed last week.
"I'm ready to do whatever coach needs," Mohammed said. "I'm not going to complain either way. Sometimes you be careful what you ask for because you just might get it. If I have to go out there and play 30 minutes, I'll go out there if Jo's not healthy. But when he's healthy, he'll go out there and take the brunt of those minutes and I'll be ready to come in."
Thomas sticks around:
The Bulls signed 6-9 forward Malcolm Thomas for the remainder of the season. Even though he'd previously played for San Antonio and Golden State, Thomas recorded his first NBA basket off a lob from Marquis Teague with 11 seconds remaining in Sunday's loss at Detroit.
Those were not Thomas' first NBA points. Before joining the Bulls, the former San Diego State star had hit 4 of 6 free throws with the Spurs and Warriors, and added 2 more on Sunday. He'd gone 0-for-4 from the field, though.