Many have already called the upcoming Miami-Chicago series. It's a done deal, right?
The Bulls went 3-0 on the Heat during the regular season. The Bulls won with Lebron James in and with him out; with Chris Bosh in and with him, practically, out (1-of-18 in the second Bulls W in February).
Then there's the question of the activated and traded.
Yes, Mike Miller hadn't hit his stride yet and Mike Bibby was new to the team in March. Still, Miller hasn't had any stride in these playoffs—five points in seven playoff games—and Bibby will be owned by the Rose and the feisty and athletic Bulls backcourt.
Yet it's the playoffs and the ante has been upped, and the Heat are on a roll—on fire, as it were.
But so are the Bulls.
They're young and tenacious, and have defeated two teams with more gusto than what the Heat faced.
Meaning? The Bulls had the better lessons and the tougher road.
They will not fear Miami one iota—and back to the centerpiece of the article—because Derrick Rose won't let them.
The Man—so full Mama's modesty it's scary—doesn't take his outstanding talent for granted at all.
He's averaging 29 points, eight assists and almost five boards in these playoffs. Likewise, his past numbers versus Miami all speak toward domination.
Here's a fact: Rose is faster than Dwayne Wade.
And an opinion, close to fact: Wade is scared of Rose.
Going head-to-head these two speed-demons are like watching Looney Tunes on the court.
But Rose, seven years younger, is fresher and has developed a lateral game that Wade should admire. Whereas Wade can still get around the basket nearly all the time, Rose can get right up to it at will, anytime.
He is not afraid of Joel Anthony, Chris Bosh or Zydrunas Ilgauskas because he know that, respectively, they get faked easy, have soft-spots and are just too damn old to do anything about his drives.
And just like in the Bulls last two series, the Heat will play scared of Rose's paint-forays and back off to let him hit jumpers. Yeah, go ahead and do that.
Back to Chicago's front line, this is where, secondary to Rose, the Bulls will shine brightest.
With Joakim Noah, Carlos Boozer and Taj Gibson, the Bulls have three supreme trailers and forwards/centers that like to get out and run unlike the Heat's inside men.
Boozer will dominate Bosh with physicality—expect a Bosh flop-athon—while Noah will run Anthony and Ilgauskas ragged.
Finally, Lebron James.
The King will get his points, assists and boards, but guarding taller shooters like Luol Deng and Kyle Korver will keep him out of his comfort zone on defense, mainly in the deep wings and limit his fast breaks.
The Bulls need to run multiple guard-combos like Ronnie Brewer and Keith Bogans at James to keep him occupied at all times. Also, they need to play off him more and force his jump shot.
With these pieces in place there is no reason that Rose and the Chi-town can not advance to the Big Show in, say, six games?
Oh yeah, one more thing: Run, Bulls, Run!