Chuck's Daily Check In 10.13.17

GAME NIGHT AT THE UNITED CENTER:
Toronto (2-2) at Bulls (3-2). 7PM CT.
TV: NBC Chicago: Neil Funk and Stacey King
Radio: WLS 890AM. Chuck Swirsky and Bill Wennington, Steve Kashul. Pre Game 6:30 CT on BullsTV/Bulls.com (pre game show only) Tip at 7PM.

Hello and Hello again! The two teams finish off preseason play tonight then meet in the regular season opener Thursday in Canada.

Last game: Bulls 108-Cavaliers 94. Justin Holiday with 28 points 11 rebounds. + 18. Lauri Markkanen with 18 points 5 reb in 30 minutes.

Bulls trivia: The Bulls preseason roster stands at 20 players. 12 new faces. The average age of the Bulls is 24.2 years old. The Bulls are the only team in the league not to have a single player in camp who has already reached his 30th birthday.

Homecoming for two Raptors:

Alfonso McKinnie (Currie/Marshall)-Attended Eastern Illinois and Wisconsin-Green Bay. Averaged 14 pts 9 rebounds and 30 minutes in 50 games (34 starts) for the Windy City Bulls last season. He scored in double figures 41 times with 18 double-doubles. Had 13 points 8 rebounds – 4 steals Oct. 5 at Portland.

Fred Van Vleet enters his second season in the NBA. A native of Rockford, IL. Van Vleet attended Auburn High and was a terrific player at Wichita State University. He is Rockford’s first sports tourism ambassador. He’s going to host an All Star Game watch party with proceeds going to youth basketball in the Rockford area.

AIR MILES ANYONE?

The Raps had training camp in Victoria, BC then departed for Hawaii for 5 days playing two games against the Clippers. Before returning to Toronto, the Raptors played in Portland. On Tuesday the Raptors played their only preseason home game blasting the Pistons. Now they arrive in Chicago for a Friday night game against the Bulls.

Another stat about the Raps. They open up the regular season with two home games before leaving on a six game, twelve day road trip, but after January 1st, Toronto plays only one road Western Conference game. (Minnesota). The rest of their schedule is primarily against Eastern Conference foes.

NBA NOTES:

Memphis announced that Tony Allen’s #9 jersey will be retired. Allen, from Crane High School in Chicago, left it all on the floor for the Grizzlies and will have a lifetime membership in the Grind House with this announcement.

Tough loss for the Miami Heat with the news that hard working, small forward Rodney McGruder will have surgery to repair a stress fracture in his left leg. McGruder played in a team high 78 games last year, starting 65.

Dallas rookie point guard Dennis Smith Jr. suffered a sprained left ankle in last night’s game against Atlanta and is listed day to day.

(AP) In an interview with Cigar Aficionado, Michael Jordan said, “I think it’s going to hurt the overall aspect of the league from a competitive standpoint. You’re going to have one or two teams that are going to be great, and another 28 teams that are going to be garbage. Or they’re going to have a tough time surviving in the business environment.”

Our best wishes to former Loyola University announcer and long time NBA play by play broadcaster, Brian Wheeler who is taking a leave of absence for undisclosed health reasons.

E-mail me with your thoughts on the Bulls and NBA cswirsky@bulls.com. Twitter: @ctsbulls.

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