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I’ve really started to hear a lot of negative talk about the Bulls based on their first two postseason games. Comments about how they’re a “one man team” and “Derrick won’t be able to keep this up all postseason long.” I even heard that our old friend Skip Bayless, now on ESPN, said Atlanta would beat them in 5 should we meet up in the 2nd round. Yes, the same Atlanta that we beat by about 500 points in Atlanta in the 2nd game of a back-to-back for us.

It would be one thing if we had lost both games at home, or even one, but we are 2-0 and really just need to split in Indiana to have us looking real good in the series. Maybe I’m a little too old school, but I don’t care much for style points. In the postseason I subscribe to the “a win is a win” theory. Do I think the Bulls can play better than they have shown in the first two games? Yes. Do I think they will need to play better down the road? Yes. Do I think they will play better? Yes. We’re 2-0, just like we should be, and there is absolutely no reason to panic like I hear some fans doing. I’m pretty sure San Antonio and Los Angeles would trade places with us in a second. I guess I’m just a little frustrated that people (mostly Nationally) are counting the Bulls out because of the way they have played in two games…. Two games that THEY WON! But I guess most of those people have been picking against the Bulls all year long so they’re probably rooting against the Bulls so that they can feel like they’re smart. Rant over.

Moving on to tonight’s game, the big question is about Darren Collison. It sounds like he is a game-time decision, but I’m going to take the same approach I’m sure Thibs is taking and assume that he is going to play. Collison is a difference maker for the Pacers, we saw that in game one. If he’s unable to go that would be a huge break for Indiana, but I would expect him to do whatever it takes to get on the floor. If he does play, it will be interesting to see how close to full strength he is.

From the Bulls standpoint, it’s kind of the same thing we’ve been saying for the entire series. I would like to see them play looser on offense and play with intensity on defense. I feel like one big run for our guys would sort of take the weight of the world off their shoulders. I would still like to see the Bulls go down low as often as possible because I don’t think the Indiana bigs can stop Boozer much. But, I’m looking at Loul Deng in this one. He has been pretty quiet so far this series. He’s averaging 16 PPG but it’s a quiet 16 if you know what I mean. He made some comments expressing some frustration about people calling the Bulls “a one man team.” I’m hoping he goes out their tonight and proves to everyone that they’re not.

Stat of the Day:

Chicago out rebounded Indiana 49-34 in game one and 57-33 in game two.

Probable Indiana Starters:

G – Darren Collison, 12.5 PPG

G – Paul George, 4.0 PPG

F – Danny Granger, 21.5 PPG

F – Tyler Hansbrough, 14.0 PPG

C – Roy Hibbert, 9.5 PPG

Probable Chicago Starters:

G – Derrick Rose, 37.5 PPG

G – Keith Bogans, 1.5 PPG

F – Luol Deng, 16.0 PPG

F – Carlos Boozer, 14.5 PPG

C – Joakim Noah, 7.0 PPG


Current Line: Chicago -4, Over/Under 189

This one is going to be an absolute dog fight. The Pacers know that they need this one. Going down 3-0 in a Best of 7 series pretty much kills your hope of winning the series. They’re back home and they’ve proved to themselves that they can play with the Bulls. We are going to get their best effort tonight. I expect them to continue to try and beat up on Derrick. Like game 1, the Bulls need to step up and have his back. Unlike game 1, however, somebody else is going to have to step up and really help Derrick out. Boozer really shouldn’t have a hard time going for 20 and 10 against the Indiana bigs, but he’ll have to keep himself on the court to do that. The Bulls will have to play better defensively than they did in game 1 and better offensively than they did in game 3 to win this one. I think they will. I also think that Derrick will take a lot better care of the ball in this one than he did in game 2.

Bulls 94 Pacers 93