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Wake Up Call For Thomas

By: Eddie Kendralla
http://twitter.com/EKendralla86

I can’t imagine the 2009 NBA draft was very much fun for Tyrus Thomas to watch. The Bulls, with two first round draft picks, drafted two players in James Johnson and Taj Gibson who both possess the ability to play power forward, a spot currently occupied by former first round pick. Already the subject of numerous trade rumors, the draft was another message from the Bulls they not sold on Tyrus Thomas, at least not yet.

Thomas’ three-year run with the Bulls has been marked by inconsistency and disappointment. He has shown flashes of excitement warranting him being the former fourth pick in the draft in 2006, especially in the thrilling seven game series with the Celtics, but not to the extent that the Bulls can make a long-term commitment to him. With this in mind, the drafting of Johnson and Gibson can be viewed as both insurance and a not-so-discrete message to Thomas that he needs to step up or find himself with the title of former Bull.

I believe the three can co-exist with Johnson playing more time at the three spelling Luol Deng and then the Bulls running with Thomas, Gibson and Noah in the post positions. But if the Bulls are going to contend, then they need Thomas to be more consistent; as a rebounder, with his mid-range jumper and low-post game. He needs to be able to contribute every night and not leave the Bulls wondering what they are going to get. This causes rotation issues and drains the confidence of the entire team. If this Bulls team is going to take the next step in 2010, Tyrus Thomas will be a big part of it.

If Thomas continues to cause the Bulls headaches and does not show signs of improvement, he could find his way out of the Chicago sooner rather than later. The Bulls are not the most patient of organizations, especially when it comes to big men drafted in the lottery. Just ask Tyson Chandler and Eddy Curry.

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