Kirk Hinrich is a streaky player, but the Bulls will need him to be on if they have any chance in this series.
He's averaging 15.4 points per game in April, and has hit two or more three-pointers in seven of eight games. His performance against Boston on Tuesday might have been the best of the season; he had 30 points, connected on four three's, and hit multiple clutch shots down the stretch to give the Bulls the lead for good.
When Hinrich hits his jumper, it makes the Bulls really difficult to defend. Derrick Rose can drive the lane a bit easier knowing help can't come from Hinrich's man, and it also frees up Luol Deng for baseline and corner jumpers.
Derrick Rose, on the other hand, has been on a tear this month, averaging 25.4 points and seven assists on 54 percent shooting.
He gets into the lane at will and the Cavs have had trouble stopping quick, athletic point guards this year.
If the Bulls are going to make this a series, they'll need strong guard play, from Hinrich and Rose especially.
Mo has been sensational for the Cavs in the last eight games, going for 21.7 points, 7.2 assists, and three three-pointers on 54 percent shooting in just a little over 30 minutes per game.
I've written about this before, so I'll keep it brief. But when Mo is playing confidently on the offensive side of the ball, he gives the Cavs another dimension that makes them almost unstoppable on that side of the ball. When he doesn't, the Cavs go through long droughts.
If Mo is matching Derrick Rose's production, the Cavs shouldn't have too much of a problem in this series.
The Bulls won 10 of 14 to get the last playoff berth, and seem to be playing with the same swagger they had in the 2009 playoffs. They also won five of their last six games on the road.
They won't be lacking confidence heading into the series, which is a definite plus. If they limped into the playoffs like Detroit did last year, they wouldn't have a chance.
But they're playing their best ball of the season at the right time, and they have nothing to lose in this series, which is always dangerous for a No. 1 seed.
Cleveland's Interior Players
Shaq hasn't played in nearly two months. Even though he's starting Saturday, don't expect him to be in game shape.
Zydrunas Ilgauskas has somewhat struggled since his return; the coaching staff hasn't found the right combination with Z on the floor.
In the four games against Chicago, J.J. Hickson was incredibly inefficient, putting up just 4.5 points and 2.8 rebounds. I know I said you can't take much from the regular season, but this is a disturbing trend. The Cavs need J.J. to match Chicago's athleticism in Noah and Warrick.
The Cavs will be trying to get O'Neal back in the rotation and it could hinder some of their dominance in the paint. The Cavs can win this series if they score a high number of points in the paint and make Chicago pay for their lack of a physical presence inside.
They'll need their bigs to improve what they're currently producing.
When the Bulls shipped out John Salmons and Tyrus Thomas, they really shortened their bench.
Flip Murray is really Chicago's only bench player that can score in bunches. Other than that, they won't utilize their bench too much.
On the flip side (get it?), the Cavs have one of the deepest and most productive benches in the league. Whether or not Chicago wears down as the series progresses is something to keep your eye on.