With the shock of watching the Bulls’ point guard, Derrick Rose, be carried away after tearing his ACL still fresh in the minds of many, all is not lost. The fact remains that there is still basketball life in Chicago. That thought has been lost on the many people who saw the Bulls as championship contenders.
Are the Bulls finished in the postseason?
No other team in the NBA has had to deal with as many injuries this season as the Bulls have. No other team has responded to injuries the same way that the Bulls have either. The Bulls have been preparing for a marathon, not a sprint, and now their depth will be seriously tested.
That does not mean that the Bulls are done. They should have no problems defeating the 76ers in their best-of-seven series.
The 76ers are a young team that does not feature a go-to scorer in crunch-time and have very little resistance down in the low post. This series should be and most likely will become a coming out party of sorts for Bulls’ power forward Taj Gibson.
I believe that his versatility will be showcased and eventually be a major reason the Bulls still win the series in five games.
After that, a matchup with either the Hawks or Celtics will perhaps give the Bulls trouble. Considering the two teams will be worn out from playing one, this may turn out to be an easier than expected series in the second round.
Who knows what penalty that the Celtics’ Rajon Rondo will have to face after bumping an official in the Celtics game one loss to the Hawks.
I am not ready to hand the Eastern Conference over to the Heat.
They will have their hands full with the Knicks and Pacers. I do not believe that the either team will lie down and give a series to the Heat.
That would set up a conference finals rematch between the Bulls and Heat. This would provide an interesting storyline in a matchup of heart versus talent.
Would the Heat win this series?
Possibly, but injuries are sometimes freak occurrences that could strike at any given time or place. Especially with the season being as compact as it was. Nagging injuries become huge ones that turn any contending team into mortal. Then it becomes all about the heart of a team.
Thus far, no team has exhibited as much heart as the Bulls. That should continue even as they are playing without the heart and soul of their team. The Chicago Bulls are stronger than many of us think.
This is why the Bulls are not finished in this postseason.