Chicago fans were excited at the prospect of witnessing the second coming of Michael and Scottie along with the championships that would soon follow. There would be no questioning LeBron and Rose’s ability to add a few more banners alongside the six that already hang high above the United Center floor.
Afterall, the rebirth of once-proud Chicago franchises is a popular topic around the Windy City these days. Imagine what LeBron could add to the landscape? James and Rose sharing a residence with Kane and Toews? All of a sudden Chicago winters seem instantly less insufferable.
But with the greatest free agent class in history poised to ink new deals this summer, is LeBron the final piece to the Bulls’ championship puzzle?
In a word: No.
Simply having the greatest talent in the game on your side does not automatically guarantee multiple title runs, just ask Cleveland fans.
The key to the championship riddle is chemistry. How well do the players coexist with one another on the floor? Is the whole truly greater than the sum of its parts?
In the case of a basketball team led by James and Rose, the answer would again be, "No." Just think about it for a moment. Think about these two amazing talents and consider what makes them great.
Now think about how their games would relate to one another on the same court at the same time.
One ball, two players, same basic offensive skill set—use superior athleticism to blow by defenders all the way to the rim.
If the Chicago Bulls acquired basketball’s most unique talent this summer the offense would look something like this next winter:
Hey LeBron, why don’t you try going one on five this time?
Isn’t that what we just ran?
Oh right, Derrick why don’t you try going one on five this time?
How exactly does one complement the other? They don’t.
Neither player is known for having a reliable outside jumper and both lack a polished post up game. Their playmaking skills would be wasted on a team that fails to shoot a high percentage from distance—ever since the departure of Ben Gordon last summer.
An offense led by James and Rose would lack options, and one thing we’ve learned by watching the NBA playoffs this season is that ANY offense without options can be stopped. Yes, even one led by "The Chosen One."
Experts have long agreed what the Bulls lack most is a post player and since Gordon left town they could use a decent outside shooter as well. Which of these needs does James fill again?
Neither, but Chris Bosh fills 1 ½ of them.
Bosh is certainly no long-range specialist, but he continues to improve upon an increasingly steady jump shot.
This is the type of player the Bulls should desperately try to add because Rose and Bosh could play off one another and cause opposing defenses to pick their own method of ruin.
Do we double-team Rose and leave Bosh open to knock down another 17-footer or do we allow Rose to beat us in a one-on-one game all night long? Either way I like the Bulls odds in that scenario.
So let the New York Knicks woo the greatest talent in the game this summer. Let Knicks fans, "Ooh," and, "ah," every time LeBron throws down another thunderous dunk. And let them giggle when he tosses a puff of smoke into the air just before tip-off.
I may indeed be a “witness,” but I would prefer to witness Derrick Rose and Chris Bosh pick and roll their way to multiple championships.
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