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Tyrus Thomas Provides Spark for Chicago Bulls

Wesley Kaminsky@@Wesley_KaminskyCorrespondent IIIJanuary 3, 2010

Two weeks ago the Bulls were 10-17, and had come off of blowing a 35 point lead against the Kings, then losing in New York against the Knicks in which Vinny Del Negro ran just three plays the whole game. If his seat wasn't hot already, right now it's burning. How does a coach possibly keep his job after blowing a 35 point lead at home? Don't ask me, ask Bulls owner Jerry Reinsdorf.

All signs pointed to the firing of Vinny Del Negro to be imminent, but Bulls management wanted to see what he could do with a full lineup. With the return of Tyrus Thomas, they would surely see. 

Since Tyrus has returned he is averaging 13 points, and 9 rebounds while helping the Bulls win four straight games. They look like a new team, and as long as they keep winning, Vinny Del Negro is going nowhere. Not only was it the return of Tyrus Thomas, but another spark has been swapping Kirk Hinrich into the starting lineup with John Salmons to the bench.

With Salmons off the bench, he is finding his rhythm again averaging 13 points and shooting 50 percent from the field. The Bulls are just two games out of the five spot as poorly as they had been playing, proving the weak Eastern conference. The Bulls' next five games are very winnable, and if they can keep playing like this, the winning will continue. 

Next Five Games:

vs. OKC

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@ CHA

@ Mil

vs. Minn

vs. Det