The Bulls have a chance to get to .500 Friday night in Memphis. I have a chance to get to .500 in fans' opinion since I got ripped plenty for my answers last week. Hope you like this batch and keep the questions coming.

K.C., why Tyrus and Joakim are not getting the minutes? They're the workhorses underneath and why coach Del Negro deprived their playing minutes? Is there a problem? --Renato Rosuello, Manila, Philippines

Manila, we have a problem. It's detailed , and reporters who cover the team on a regular basis are still in shock at how direct, blunt and strong coach Vinny Del Negro was in assessing why minutes have disappeared for Thomas and Noah. Del Negro's style thus far has been almost always positive, rarely admitting anything is wrong. But his answers to fairly softball questions about minutes dropping for Thomas and Noah--after all, we've seen this before--brought on answers for which Scott Skiles would've been proud. One thing Del Negro hasn't hesitated to do in his brief tenure is to send messages via lack of playing time. You have to respect that.

Here is a trade for you to think about. Dallas sends Jerry Stackhouse and Brandon Bass to the Bulls for Tyrus Thomas and Thabo Sefolosha. --James O'Dell, Queen Creek, Ariz.

Stackhouse is available, although I'm not sure what adding another perimeter player does for the Bulls. Granted, Stackhouse gets to the rim a lot but he also would expect to play and you'd be sending the one perimeter player who isn't playing right now in Sefolosha to Dallas. Also, I don't know for sure, but I'd doubt Dallas would part with Bass.

I can't help but wonder if the Bulls would consider making a trade now! rather than waiting for 2010 for, say, Chris Bosh, what do you think of Hinrich, Thomas, Noah, and Thabo for Bosh? The Bulls seem to be competing as of late and winning games. So why not make a run this year and see what happens. Imagine Rose, Gordon, Hughes, Deng and Bosh. --N.K., Las Vegas

Toronto is trying to make a trade to keep Bosh, not get rid of him. If you want expiring deals like Anthony Parker or Kris Humphries, Toronto is your team. If you want Bosh, you'll get a dial tone.

Dear K.C., why does Vinny Del Negro always sit Derrick Rose and Drew Gooden at the beginning of the fourth quarter? I don't think it's my imagination that NBA coaches blindly follow this unwritten rule that you must rest your best players for the first three to four minutes of the last quarter. It seems analogous to baseball, where managers feel they have to use their best reliever for the last three outs, even if the turning point in the game is the eighth inning. There have been several games this season where the Bulls have been leading going into the fourth and then the momentum shifts as our best players watch from the bench. I know we ride Rose hard but can't he get his rest at other points of the game and just play the entire fourth? --David Holland, Evanston, Ill. (Beloit College '03, ETHS '98)

Del Negro has been giving Rose rest like the Bulls used to with Jordan, taking him out slightly before quarters end so he gets the entire quarter break and then the early stages of the next quarter. I like that philosophy. That you don't--and that you went to such two spectacular schools--is beyond me.

Just kidding. Rose plays virtually the entire second half each game, so he's got to rest sometime. I think that's a good time.

I thought Del Negro was a fan of Tyrus Thomas when he was with Phoenix and wanted him that year in the draft. So why is he treating Tyrus like he's Kornell David? I mean Tyrus is better than Nocioni defensively as well as Bagaric-sans-athleticism Gray. I have no use watching pro basketball when waddles, Aaron Gray, is our starting center. --Charles Armstrong, Harbor Springs, Mich.

Remember when Tyrus was putting up double-doubles with consistency during the preseason? Man, how about those days? I know preseason hoops is waaaaaay different, but I thought, as did many around the Bulls, that Tyrus had turned a corner. The coaching staff, obviously, feels differently.

What has surprised me about Tyrus' latest trip to the doghouse is that it comes on the heels of fairly solid back-to-back games. I asked around to see if Tyrus had done something nutty like blow off a practice or a shootaround or something and was told no. All I can go by is what people tell me. From what Del Negro said following Wednesday's practice, he takes issue with Thomas' lack of focus and professionalism.

As for Gray, he might be the second-most polaziring figure on the team behind Hinrich in terms of fan e-mail I receive. Plenty of people love him. Others feel the same as you, although perhaps not as humorously. It is shocking that Gray, a second-round pick, is playing ahead of lottery picks like Thomas and Joakim Noah, but that tells you what the staff thinks of Thomas and Noah.

Professor, please compare and contrast Tyrus Thomas and Stromile Swift. Regards. --Rev. F., Coopersville, Mich.

This is a nice spinoff from one of my favorite questions of this young season, asking me to compare and contrast Joakim Noah and Brad Sellers. Like that one, this one needs little response and is merely included for its sheer hilarity. (Although I do predict Thomas will last longer in the league than Swift.)

Have you noticed a power struggle between BG and DRose? Ben Gordon is reluctant to give DRose the ball when he calls for it towards the end of the game; he just seems to wave him off and go the other direction. I've noticed this twice. Has VDN specified who his go-to guy is in those critical times during the game? And what are your thoughts on who that player should be. --Dalton, Chicago

Rose, Rose and then Rose again.

I've received this question a lot about a power struggle, and all I can say is BG doesn't really discriminate. He takes shots when other players are open pretty much with everybody, not just Rose. He's a scorer and that's the mentality he's always had. I don't see Ben taking that many worse or outlandish shots than he did during his rookie season, when everybody loved him. You also have to admit that he can make some ridiculous shots. I know Ben drives people crazy with his decision-making and I'm not saying he's the perfect player. I'm just saying as a scorer, you have to give him some leeway.