Each pass seems to bring another milestone for Joakim Noah these days.
With his second assist of Friday's win over Detroit, Noah became the eighth center in NBA history to collect 400 assists in a season. He joins Wilt Chamberlain, Sam Lacey, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Bill Russell, Vlade Divac, Wes Unseld and Alvan Adams. The first four players on that list did it multiple times.
Overall, it wasn't a great night for Noah since the Bulls were clobbered on the boards by Detroit center Andre Drummond in the first half. Earlier in the day, though, Noah appreciated the moment.
"I'm living my dream," Noah said at the morning shootaround. "I get to play basketball for a living in front of 25,000 people that go crazy for us at the United Center. I try not to take any of these moments for granted. Even though the playoffs are coming up and people always want to talk about what's going on ahead, it's important for us to stay focused on our team and our progress. I'm just enjoying the moment."
Amundson glad to get call:
The Bulls brought back three former teammates this week by signing Ronnie Brewer, Mike James and Lou Amundson.
Of the three, Amundson has the loosest ties to the Bulls. His only previous experience was a 10-day contract and a single game appearance midway through last season.
"It was a little late in the season and I was getting a little discouraged," he said before Friday's game. "I'm happy about it. I was here last season for a 10 day. I would have liked to stay, but I had an opportunity where I could play."
When Amundson's 10-day ended last season, he took an offer to sign with New Orleans for the remainder of the season. He was back with the Pelicans this year until getting released in January. Since then, he's been at home in Colorado working out and waiting for his phone to ring.
"I would have liked to have this happen a month or two ago, but better late than never," said Amundson, who has played for eight teams since 2006. "I'm on a really good team. The Bulls are playing great and they have a chance to make some noise in the playoffs, so that's really exciting."
James feels comfortable:
Veteran point guard Mike James was back in uniform on Friday. His return seemed inevitable since the start of training camp.
James got to relearn the Bulls' offense during camp, stuck around until Dec. 16 and signed a 10-day contract in January. Now he's ready and waiting in case one of the point guards gets injured in the playoffs.
"I was training, believing, knowing that someone is going to call me," James said. "I'm comfortable here. I've been here. Trying to learn a new system is difficult, especially at the end of the season. But I know these guys I know the team and so it's almost like I never left."