I'm a company man. I support the team. I hate Vinny. I love Pax. I think D-Rose is going to be the best point guard in the NBA someday soon. I like Luol Deng to the point that I don't even hate his contract. To top it all off I have convinced myself that John Wall will be a bust--partly because I'm threatened by the fact that he could be better than Derrick Rose. I look at everything the Bulls do through "Rose" colored glasses, so to speak.
But the Bulls are going to lose tonight. They aren't just going to lose, they are going to get shellacked.
Last night was the playoffs for the Bulls. They ended the Celtics as we know them, and they laid it all on the line doing so. For them to come back the next night and win on the road after what they expended last night is too much to ask. It's not going to happen. They proved their point: They are better than some middling Eastern Conference team, and they made their case to the big name free agents that Chicago is a viable destination. Because of this, I won't even be mad when they lose: it's the inevitable outcome.
Larry Brown is of the philosophy that you go into the playoffs with all cylinders clicking. What would be a better way for an inexperienced team to grab some playoff momentum than to beat down a team trying to win a must-win game? The Bobcats are gonna be ready to play. And it sucks that the Bulls had to do what they did to win last night, but it happened. Boston was trying to use their game against the Bulls as a playoff primer, just like Charlotte will. The Celtics looked at their game against the Bulls as an opportunity to capture some passion for a team that has had trouble rallying itself. And they failed. The Bobcats are good enough, and the Bulls are weary enough that if they come to play tonight, the Bulls have no chance to win. The Bulls won't have their home crowd (which was rocking last night) to rally them, and once the first couple of jumpshots don't fall it will all be down hill from there. We, as fans, can only hope that the Raptors are bad enough to lose to the Knicks at home--which they very well might be. But as for the Bulls clinching from a victory: it's not going to happen. I may be a company man, but in being one I know the limits of this organization. The Bulls have reached them for this year. Blame New Jersey. It was this team's Waterloo.