Before the season started if I said one of these teams would be the top seed in the NBA, have the MVP, coach of the year and executive of the year I feel pretty safe in saying I might get 9 out of 10 people saying that it would have to be Miami.
Well those people were wrong and it was the young, up and coming Chicago Bulls with the youngest MVP in league history taking on the "Big 3" of Miami. This has been the matchup the Bulls have been waiting for. Carlos Boozer wanted this matchup. Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah have been working toward this series all season.
Carlos Boozer wanted to be part of the party in south beach. He has a home in Miami so you can't blame him but Miami wanted the 3 members of the 2003 draft class. Derrick Rose might not have been as active in recruiting the big free agents to come join him in Chicago but Joakim Noah reached out to Lebron James and never heard back from him.
We may never really know the whole story but Wade & Lebron still to this day say they were tempted by Chicago but many including the young Bulls stars felt it was just all a game and James & Wade knew all along they were teaming up in Miami.
The Bulls decided something heading into game 1. Slow down Wade & James and let's see if the rest of the team can beat you. They got their answer and it is no. Chris Bosh lead all scorers with 30 but really made no impact. He had 9 rebounds but no assists, blocks or steals. The Heat proved they are a team full of iso players and still have no idea how to play as a team unless they are on the fast break..
Early on it looks like Luol Deng was going to be completely outclassed by Lebron but it was Deng who ended up winning the matchup. Luol took the chances when they came to him. He went 4-6 from 3pt land while scoring 21, grabbing 7 boards and getting his hands on 4 steals while holding James to 15 points.
The Bulls played exactly like they have all season and unlike the past 2 series actually started this series playing like we all know they can. All 10 players that played for Chicago scored and all played at least 10 minutes. Taj Gibson lead the bench mob with 9 points and 7 rebounds including 2 monster dunks in the 4th quarter. Derrick Rose lead the Bulls in scoring with 28 points while Boozer also chipped in 14 points and 9 rebounds (4 offensive). Noah continued to dominate the board with 14 including 8 offensive rebounds.
Besides being outplayed on the court the Bulls also won the coaching battle. Coach Thibs continued to coach and use his bench like he has all season while the Heat coach decided to go small to beat the Bulls with speed which was a very poor choice. When the Heat went small the Bulls stayed the course and kept Deng on him and moved Taj or Boozer to guard James Jones. Erik Spoelstra didn't even dress center Erick Dampier or Zydrunas Ilgauskas and only played Udonis Haslem 4 minutes of garbage time at the end of the game.
Game 2 of this series is Wednesday at 7:30 central time. The reason for the delay is that Oprah has taken over the UC on Monday and Tuesday to film one of her final shows.