Right now the Bulls are sitting at a cool .500, tied with the Washington Wizards for the 5th seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs. It's pretty safe to say (baring some trades that could change our roster or another playoff teams) the Bulls should finish as low as the 6 seed and as high as the 3rd. If we peg the Bulls in that range then their first round playoff match up should be with the Raptors, Hawks, or Wizards.
It just so happens that they play the Hawks on the 11th and the Raptors on the 19th. Chicago doesn't face the Wizards again until April and already chalked up 2 losses to the Wiz already (Recap one & two). I also didn't have seats to those games, but I snagged tickets to the Toronto Raptors game on the 19th, my first in person game of the year :). I think these two games could give us a little insight on how the teams match up with their current rosters for the spring, if it was up to me I would play Atlanta every time and below is why!
1) They did beat the Hawks about a month ago, so that's a nice place to start.
2) Al Horford is out for the season, not to jab at a guy getting hurt but it makes them a very different team AND we are another city that knows what it's like to lose our superstar.
4) The hidden gem that has become D.J Augustin - we snag the guy out the abyss and he is averaging over 16 and 5 since January 1st. Good read here about his "resurrection" since coming to Chicago.
5) Gibson and Noah have a strong recent history against Atlanta - Since they only played once this year I ignored it but went to last years splits. Gibson averaged a double double and Noah was 0.5 ppg away from accomplishing the same feat, mind you that was when Horford was healthy!
The moral of my story is that this Bulls team (I think without or without Boozer) is superior to Atlanta as long as D.J stays consistent. As for the Raptors, I think that teams is pretty dang good but perhaps I will see some holes in their lineup from the stands in a few weeks.
Who would your ideal 1st round match up be? Washington, Toronto, or Atlanta?