As a Bulls fan I am often irritated by the infatuation the media have with the Heat. Most fans that I speak to believe the Miami Heat can beat the Chicago Bulls because of how much the Bulls rely on Derrick Rose for offense. People look at the Bulls’ loss to the Miami Heat in last years Eastern Conference Finals and all they remember is that once LeBron James started to defend Derrick Rose the Bulls’ offense became stagnant. I remember a Bulls team that had yet to make it out of the first round gain experience.
The two most dangerous teams in the league are the Chicago Bulls and the Oklahoma City Thunder; the Thunder might even be better. These are two young teams, one with a great offense, the other with a great defense. The Miami Heat are a great team but their weaknesses are much stronger than those of the Thunder or Bulls. The Heat’s biggest weakness are if they are out rebounded, confined to a half court defense, and defended by zone they are merely average. The combination of LeBron James and Dwyane Wade may seem dominate but if the team has to rally back from a large deficit the team loses its offense and begins using all isolation plays.
This Sunday (April 1st, 2012) the Bulls suffered a terrible loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder, this is the first time in Derrick Rose’s 20 absences this season that his participation was truly missed. Derrick Rose’s ability to penetrate, draw a double team, and dish to the open teammate is what makes him the reigning MVP and dominate player that he is. With John Lucas III and C.J. Watson against an elite guard like Russell Westbrook their constant dribbling above the 3-point line awaiting an open teammate was ineffective at best. After such a bad loss the Bulls became vulnerable to the possibility of Miami Heat catching them and taking the number one seed in the East but the Miami Heat showed their inconsistent tendencies yet again but instead of an elite team like the Thunder, the Heat loss to an injury stricken Boston Celtics team with a thin roster.
People on Twitter were telling me after the Bulls’ loss to the Thunder that they have shown their weakness and have proved they cannot contend with elite teams. These same people were telling me the Heat’s loss was nothing more than a speed bump on their road to the Finals. This kind of hypocrisy is shameful and just ignorant. The Chicago Bulls have only played six games with their starting five yet the still have the best record in the association. Last year the Miami Heat were the most hated team now they are the most beloved. People act as if they would be surprised if the Miami Heat lost this year. I would be surprised if they won because I do not think this Miami Heat team is not compatible. If you look at the Boston Celtics big three when they were assembled they were an automatic success, won a championship, and have been the scariest team in the Eastern Conference or almost 5 years. There is something about this Heat team that does not mesh and until that problem is solved they will remain far from invincible.