There seems to be a bit of blowback against the impressiveness of the Bulls win last night, focusing on the Spurs being an older team with some new parts and with a general history of being poor on back-to-backs. Even if those excuses are valid (which...whatever), the Bulls need not make any excuses in this early stretch of the schedule. They need every win they can get no matter how they come.
But it was more important that they looked good last night. Perhaps not the smoothest offense, but winning nearly every contested rebound can be pretty as well. Maybe such hustle points are indeed directly related to the Spurs relative fatigue.
But we'll know that while the Celtics are also old they're rarely down on intensity, what with Mr. Intense Braying Jackass Kevin Garnett leading his woofing crew of Perkins, Rondo, and new addition Rasheed Wallace (Big Baby is out, though count him in that group). What a gloriously easy team to despise, and that's before considering the events of the greatest first round playoff series loss ever.
And while I'll never concede that a first round loss to a team losing its best player is anything to build on, what I did get out of that series was an intense hate of the Celtics. And the players likely aren't too fond of eachother either, which will bring a fun subplot to the game, even if principalslike KG and Luol Deng (and Gordon missing) making the 'rivalry' not quite the same in terms of the actual basketball.
Remember, it was just last season when the Bulls traveled to Boston after an impressive opening night win...and got absolutely demolished. Tyrus Thomas was especially goat-ed for his performance, as the C's left him open to jumpshoot his way to a 2-17 line.
But this team is better than that one, and the opening win was more impressive. What won't change is the lock-down Celtics defense, and an extremely hostile crowd. So just judging in relation to that game, it'll be a good start if the Bulls are simply unrattled and don't go into the tank early.