What Thibodeau Started, Bulls’ Players Reinforce

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MIAMI – Maybe, as one postgame wiseguy smirked after Game 1 of Heat-Bulls, the Brooklyn Nets should call P.J. Carlesimo and give him his job back.

There was no shame in losing Sunday to an undermanned, overachieving Chicago team in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference’s first round after all. Because 48 hours later, defending champion Miami lost Game 1 of the East semifinals on their home court to that same driven, unflappable bunch.

While the outside world has been busy defining Chicago by the bodies that are not there – Derrick Rose, Luol Deng and Kirk Hinrich again, same as in the clincher in Brooklyn Saturday – the Bulls keep on defining themselves by the hearts of the players who are. And their habits, discipline and trust.

When something happens that isn’t supposed to happen – like beating a well-rested Heat team while missing a pair of All-Stars and a third guy who started in Rose’s spot when he wasn’t otherwise banged up – it might be written off as a fluke. Monday, it might have been a bit of rust on Miami’s game, maybe, and a nothing-to-lose, why-the-heck-not? attitude from the Bulls.

But when it happens over and over, like the Nets ouster or the victories at Miami in January or to snap the Heat’s 27-game winning streak in March, it’s less about game-plan trickery or hard-foul skullduggery.

And when multiple things happen to bring it all together – Jimmy Butler playing 48 minutes while shadowing freshly re-minted MVP LeBron James, a Little 1 (Nate Robinson) outscoring each of the Big 3, a Miami attack that ground down to 39.7 percent shooting, a Bulls team or anyone else for that matter hanging 35 on the Heat in the fourth quarter – then it is about a pattern, a culture, a way of life as ordained by coach Tom Thibodeau.

“It starts up with Thibs,” said power forward Taj Gibson, who banged with Chris Bosh and Udonis Haslem, felt James breathing down his neck a few times and even chased Ray Allen through screens a few times. “Thibs is the guru, he understands the game plan. Then it’s the bigs talking to the guards, understanding what they need to do. Bigs are the second defense, guarding that rim. And it works out. We all talk to each other. Talking is big on this team and we help each other. We cover a lot of our weak points and we show our strong points, that’s the main thing we do.”

Look, every team has a culture of one sort or another. Championship teams such as Miami most definitely do. Thibodeau just determined that he was going to build this particular one, the sort that would lead to this more-with-less resiliency.

Late Monday night, after the cameras and lights were turned off, Thibodeau talked about building the Bulls’ foundation. It started with a group effort, with general manager Gar Forman and VP of basketball John Paxson rounding up the pieces. It is even more of a group effort now, because guys who were pieces – five, six, seven of them, by Thibodeau’s count – they’re “like assistant coaches now,” he said. It’s upperclassmen indoctrinating freshmen, essentially, and if they can embrace and preach defense to career incorrigibles (on that side of the ball anyway) such as Robinson and Marco Belinelli, they can get through to anyone.

That was the goal — a San Antonio-like program where either newcomers change or they’re out.

“Most of our core guys have been together three years,” Gibson said. “So we understand what it takes.”

At which point he rattled off a list of the basics: Know that rallies come. Stay with it. Don’t let the crowd get involved. Get, take and hit big-time shots. “Guys are stepping up whenever their name’s called,” he said. “No matter who it is and wherever they’re needed, and they’re always doing a good job.”

Why is that? In Thibs they trust.

“He watches so much film, he knows what’s going to happen,” Gibson said. “He knows everybody’s defensive stance. He had me guarding Ray Allen — that’s how much confidence he has in everybody’s ability to guard on defense. He just really drew up and knew what the team was going to do. Every time they ran offense, it was exactly what Thibs showed us on paper. It worked.

“We feel totally prepared. We just follow the paper. We follow the game plan.”

The Bulls drew on their many meetings against Miami in the past two-plus seasons, dating to their 2011 Eastern Conference finals clash. Then as now, whether against Joel Anthony or Chris (Birdman) Andersen, Chicago knew that controlling the boards, limiting Miami’s possessions and shortening their own defensive exposures, was crucial. They outrebounded the Heat 46-32 on Monday and had a 40-32 edge in points in the paint.

Drawing on the past didn’t prepare them entirely for the present. Without Deng, home in Chicago recovering from complications of a spinal tap before Game 6 vs. Brooklyn, Thibodeau was without his most leaned-upon player and Chicago was without its defensive counter for James. Next man up: Butler was thrown into the fray. The second-year player from Marquette stayed ornery and, after a phone consultation with Deng, did was he was told.

“He was just like, ‘Take up his space, make everything tough for him, challenge every shot and of course, no layups,’ ” Butler said.

James’ line still was stellar, thanks most to a scoring final quarter: 24 points, eight rebounds, seven assists. But Butler was right there with him (21 points, 14 rebounds and more free-throw attempt than James and Dwyane Wade combined). And the other Bulls were there with Butler.

“Jimmy took an assignment, and it was our job to help him from the weak side,” Gibson said. “The offensive side – it doesn’t matter, we all just helped out Jimmy.

“Jimmy understands it. Everybody who comes on this team understands it right away. Because we’ve got guys that are blue collar and understand the hard work we’re putting in. They see every game we play against [Miami]. They understand the grittiness and griminess of the East game. And guys just adapt to it. You see Marco, the way he’s playing. You see the way Nate’s playing. Everybody plays with heart.”

Other teams have heart. Culture isn’t unique to Chicago. But the culture that the Bulls built is special because it’s theirs.

Next man up? More than enough to win? There never has been a better time for that than now, maybe no better team to heed it than this one.

117 Comments

  1. digitioli says:

    If the game is decided by the players and not the referees, the Bulls have a fighting chance. That’s a very big if.

  2. Ron says:

    Miami Heat, they are never fun to watch. It was the Bulls who made this game fun to watch. Always good to see when guts and heart wins out over superegos.

  3. acedelapaz says:

    i’m a bulls fan and i was so happy that they beat the heat in game 1 thanks to the great coaching of coach thibodeaou but bulls don’t have to be celebrate yet, this is going to be a long series. Miami will definitely bounce back. hopefully bulls will win the series and the next round and the championship. Goodluck GO chicago bulls!!! we bullieve!!!

  4. Dennis - Bulls Fan says:

    Wow where are all these Bulls fans coming from? Keep em coming! We need you guys for tomorrow!! If we can snag another one in Miami that would be epic. Im so happy we just won even one with our roster.. and thats not becasue they are bad players… they proved who they are – solid, amazing players.. Nate, Belinelli, and of course Noah, Gibson, Boozer (Boozer has had a break out year!!)and when there back Deng and Capn Kirk are killing it.

    Lastly despite being ordinary during the season, Teague and Mohammed really stepped up in the playoffs so hats off to them and their efforts… Seriously what a playoffs.. If Bulls win this Im buying the Jersey’s of the starting five! lol and Butler is a beast ALSO!! Peace!@!

  5. Drew says:

    the Bulls culture started with Noah, his intensity gets others going at a higher level
    and the culture was expanded by Thibodeau’s defensive stance and preparing his team

    More than enough to win.
    Next Man Up, always ready

  6. […] What Thibodeau Started, Bulls’ Players Reinforce […]

  7. heatlb6 says:

    Everyone knows miami had rust but that is not an excuse.. Chi-town was the better team and nate was in his kevin hart beast mode lol.. We know miami is evening the series but this may go to game 7 which I wanna see… That will light a flame under miami and who knows, maybe another mike miller turn out..

  8. HEAT here says:

    Bulls will win but not 4

  9. Let’s face it-
    Coach Thibs & the Bulls are the real deal-Go Get It Bulls-One Game @ A Time!
    I’m big fan of Thibs-thanks for the stellar defense you gave us in Boston & Bigups to aka “Nate The Great” as known in Boston!

  10. Gillsy says:

    Isn’t funny now that the Bulls are starting to get themselves into a good position Rose thinks he may be ok to play. The funny thing is Thibs has said that is no walk strait back into the team even if his mind finally gets on the court. Got to love Thibs

  11. James Joyce says:

    Chris:
    ‘Miami bandwagoners responded to this like they lost the whole series. Chicago fans responded to it as if they won the whole thing. Impressive win for Chicago but they still need to win 3 more. Regardless though, this series just became a hell of a lot more interesting.”

    No Chris! You’re the one exaggerating. Check out the post at this forum. I don’t see it.

  12. Bird33 says:

    It reminds me of a great old saying:

    Never bring a knife (Spolstra) to a gunfight (Thibs)

    LOL

    Go Bulls!!

  13. EPaul says:

    This was entirely on the Heat. The Bulls are a bunch of scrubs that are feeding off the fact that they’re a bunch of scrubs with nothing to lose. Pathetic!

  14. knicks in 5 says:

    KNICKS BEST .

  15. hero says:

    the RUST excuse during playoffs is simply lame!
    in the previous playoffs with legendary teams, when a strong dominated team rested well during playoffs, they performed very well on the next game.
    it is the first time that the RUST because of REST excuse is heavily emphasized.. LAME!
    the 3pt excuse made by Coach SPO is the right one, without the 3s made by bulls the heat couldve won the game

  16. wagedu says:

    After 27 straight wins came the Bulls, yet Heat fans will tell you “the Heat were too confident”. Now, an injury depleted Bulls crushes a RESTED Heat and it’s again “ow, they didn’t won, we were too relaxed”.
    Heatards, have you noticed that if your arguments are right, it means that you’re a bunch of arrogants? And, still, if you’re wrong, it also means the same. There’s no such thing as a “honorary championship”. You may have a great team but you still need to win games. Go anyone-who-plays-against-Heat!

  17. Thibs fan says:

    What if thibs coach the bobcats? Will the bobcats make the playoffs? Thibs best head coach without a ring as a head coach!

  18. holyspectator says:

    i gotta give bulls major props…i mean they have so many of their key guys down and out, but yet still came into that game and stole home court advantage…i was shocked that they lost…but best believe miami will come back for game 2 and go on a sick 4 game tear just like how they did against OKC last year in the finals and against the bulls in 2011. ..also if you noticed towards the end of the game, anytime miami tried to break away, silly calls threw the bulls on the line, i think that and the surprisingly poor offense lost the game for miami…i mean lets be real here, have you ever seen miami shoot that poorly?

  19. polo alawi says:

    BULL MIND”’ nothing-to-lose, why-the-heck-not? attitude from the Bulls.”

  20. danmacatuno says:

    One win and suddenly the world turns upside down? Bulls can’t beat the Heat in a 7-game series. Their time was done (MJ era), it’s Heat time!

  21. Sandy says:

    Bulls match up well with the Heat.
    The Bulls broke the Heat’s winning streak.
    The Bulls can stand up to the pressure of the Heat.
    Barring any more Heat injuries, I like the Bulls in 6.

  22. Erien says:

    No way the Bulls will win the series. Honestly, Miami had a terrible offensive night, and Chicago looked rattled when Miami put pressure on the defensively. The Heat will win in 5 easy. They will not be that poor offensively until some random game next year.

  23. eric says:

    Spo is nothing if he didn’t have “super stars” Great coach is making everything out of nothing. Spo can’t, but Thibs can. Was proven last night.

  24. Jimmy Buckets says:

    When I saw Lebron more focused on his fleet of shoes that he was going to display I knew they did not take this seriously. Also, at the end with 30 sec left Heat didnt try to foul and get back in it (there was a small chance)…. they were content with the loss. Any team that cares would fight tooth and nail until the game is 100% over, whereas they walked off. The heat say they care and are hungry for another championship BUT THEY ARE NOT.

    It comes down to:
    Shoes and postgame fashion are more important to Miami than a Championship.

  25. ky says:

    The heat played horrible in the first half.

  26. canadiantrip says:

    I’m Miami fan but hats off to Bulls.

    It’s a great story to tell whenever an underdog win it.

  27. Bubuh says:

    Imagine a 9 bball team no superstar beats all the odds and win it all. That would be one heck of a story line.

  28. B-Ball4Life says:

    I still think the Heat will win this series in 5. If this goes the full seven games imagine with Butler playing all games against James and all of the 48 min that´s ridiculous. They will break down not mentally but physically that´s for sure.
    The Bulls don´t stand a chance in a long and exhausting series. Sorry I really like the Bulls but they are too short handed.

  29. Nick_E23 says:

    Chicago has a real coach, not an overpaid Cheerleader

  30. spin says:

    watching Noah’s way of playing and memphis rythm, i could go with a crazy thought of bulls – memphis finals

  31. Jonathan says:

    “If everyone helps to hold up the sky, then one person does not become tired.”
    ― Askhari Johnson Hodari

    Go Bulls!
    #BULLSNATION

  32. igat says:

    Two of my most favorite team clashing …. Heart vs Talent ….. One of the league’s formidable talents vs the biggest hearts…

  33. Beast says:

    Great win by bulls but heat are winning the next four. This was a good wake up call for the heat.

  34. Macky says:

    anything could happen, if bulls will do it again in game 2, they have a big chance but winning a championship is very less
    The miami is now facing a big pride, shameful trauma, They need to overcome before game 3… basically its just the character of each miami players, they should not wait each to step up, Game 1 is like a rat attack to sleeping lion, the lion was so disturb and very angry so emotional so eager to kill the rat quikly, jump,run on to the escaping rat….. think about it. your mentality will bring you everywhere. Focus, mind set, and physicality that is the lack of miami.

  35. FanO Da Bulls says:

    I have to agree with Ash on this one, Thibs has been huge for our Bulls since he walked in the door. This Bulls team has been a joy to watch, win or lose. They don’t play the most entertaining style of basketball, they grind and get nasty. That said, it’s going to take some serious hard work, and some luck for us to beat Miami in this 7 game series. Whether they win or lose, I think we as fans of the game of basketball have a lot to be proud of this Bulls team for. Next season, With Rose back and healthy, watch out!
    Let’s keep this going and make this a great series! Go Bulls!!

  36. joe says:

    The Heat will win. But their championships are not impressive. MJ didnt need to join Karl Malone and Isiah Thomas to win a ring. If Mj did that, his championships would be seen as a natural consequence of voluntarily forming a dreamteam, not a story of perseverance.

    • Pakyaw says:

      When did Karl Malone won a ring?

    • Erien says:

      How wrong … Jordan had some of the best players in the NBA of all time. One being Pippen. Remember him? Lebron will undoubtedly become the greatest of all time. Imagine Lebron playing in MJs days. My god …

      • markus says:

        I think Pippen was drafted by the Seattle Supersonics in 1987 and traded to Chicago for Olden Polynice. Rodman was also traded to Chicago for Chicago Center Will Perdue. It’s not like they formed a superteam.

        I can’t imagine Lebron playing during Mj’s days, if he did, he would have complained about everything. You must remember that during Jordan’s playing days, the forearm check was still allowed. ANd Jordan dropped crazy points regardless of whatever defense was thrown at him.

        Now imagine Jordan playing in Lebron’s days, when forearm checks are now called fouls. Lol

  37. Tyrone says:

    Trade Lebron and Bosh and get someone else. If Heat lose this round will be the greatest upset of all time. Look at Chicago team, no ofense just defensive team a bunch of average players. The heat always desrespecting the opponents, they played like it’s a regular season against the Bobcats. I’m sure Riley will do something and this Heat greatness will be done soon it they choke.

  38. patrick200 says:

    the bulls will win in six games.

  39. Shawn says:

    Chicago reflects what it takes to make it in the world, Yes, Butler played admirably and I can’t help but think he made Luol Deng proud. I love that the veterans show how it is done, and now the youngsters are stepping up off he bench. I love that it reinforces the importance of “team harmony”, leadership and accountability to the great individual player Derrick Rose, that he is on the correct path. It will be a complete circle when he comes back with all doing their best!!!. Do or die! Win or lose!!! I agree wholeheartedly the coach is stupendous! One of he best I have every watched, in our time. What a great human being! i just loved what he said after beating the Nets about team spirit. Simply brilliant, and more! I also think very highly of Mike Woodsen, and would give coach of the year to him (unless Derrick Rose plays, because the coach left it to him to make the right decision)… then it is a toss up!

  40. Zoe says:

    Thibs, I want to have your baby!

  41. tetsuo697_2 says:

    Im a heat fan and ive always thought the bulls match up and there stlye of play just matches up good agaist miami but now that we got that long break over with and we got that loss to motivate us i think we can come back and play real Miami Heat basketball!

  42. Greg says:

    You know I have heard a lot of excuses from Miami about being too “rested” not making good shots, Brooklyn fired their coach……seems to me that the only real common factor is the Chicago Bulls. “it wasn’t the Bulls that snapped the streak”, or “Miami beat themselves”….bunch of BS! Give it up, and start admitting that this Chicago Bulls team is the best in the NBA AS A TEAM, and only the BULLS can stop and beat the Heat. On to the next one….keep underestimating the Bulls, they will just keep doing what they have been doing people which is WIN!

  43. BullsFan says:

    wow go bulls you win this one at home court advantage???? wait i mean heat home court.

  44. Nice article about the Bulls. I really enjoyed reading it.

  45. Strawberry Preserves says:

    Bulls bandwagon fans are out! Lol. Some Dallas Mavericks fans shifted to Bulls already? The series is not yet done boys and girls. It will be one heck of a series for the Heat and the Bulls, regardless of who is in for Chicago, with or without D.Rose.

    • bitter strawberries says:

      by bandwagon fans, do you mean basketball fans who were impressed by the fight the Bulls put up? and how did you arrive at the conclusion that Mavs fans became Bulls fans? you do realize that there’s more than one person who isn’t rooting for your team?

      • One of the king's subjects says:

        He means that because the bulls won one game bulls fans are pretending like the series is over when it just begun. Don’t no where the Mavs fans came from, but just because the bulls put up a great fight doesn’t mean its over this isn’t like college where you win and you advance this is NBA where they have to win three more times, but the bull’s bandwagon fans think the bulls are the NBA champs already.

  46. sshhh says:

    great win for the bulls!
    i hope this will be an interesting series, and not like the 2011 ECF.
    let’s go OKC!

  47. Don't give a fuk says:

    It was win and a well deserved one for sure. They got nitty and gritty in the 4th and hustled hard for the win.

    However, this is still just 1 win. No jumpers were dropping for miami… none. Now i am very certain that wont be the case next game. The bulls just dont have the fire power to do it 3 more times.

    Miami is going to take the next 4 in a row

  48. Guy says:

    Rose is missing out on taking part in this amazing, totally beyond any expectation run.
    Nate, Joakim and above all team spirit – NBA at it’s best.

  49. Nick says:

    can’t blame Lebron although he was not at his best. When are Wade and Bosh going to turn up?

  50. Let's go Heat! says:

    Heats did not play at their normal level. Heats players missed so many open shots (FG% and 3pts% well below average). Not sure if it is because they have rested for long time before Game1. Anyway, no excuse. Heats’ offence execution is ok (just miss open shot). I have no doubt Heats will win the series (no matter Rose play or not, just like 2011 season). Heats in 6!!!

  51. Don says:

    Hahah! I’m sure miami fans will blame coach spo again just like last year if they lost next games..

    • eris says:

      this is true… I don’t know why Lakers fans and Heat fans keep bickering, they’ve got so much in common

  52. Cris says:

    Great game, Bulls just came out faster, stronger, and just looked like a better team. Heat still got it. Heat in 5.

  53. Shawn Kemp No. 1 says:

    Bulls got balls! Love their defense, their heart and how well they play under pressure. They may lose the next four, but whatever happens they should be really proud of this season. The more players they have hurt, the better they play. Nate, Noah and Marco are all clutch and have insane confidence right now. I hope they can win the first one at home and put some pressure on Miami in this series, the Heat will then have to make at least some adjustments and make it very interesting!

  54. Realplaya says:

    1. People using Rust as an excuse the bulls don’t have Deng, Rose, Kirk Noah Has a foot problem.
    2. The Bulls are a better team on the road than at home.
    3. There not scared of Miami
    4. They have a better coach. Less to work with better results. If you take Lebron out of the equation then the heat are nothing.

  55. B-Ball4Life says:

    Hey Bulls fans congratulations it was really a great win.
    The Heat could not buy a bucket and the great shooters like Allen, Battier, Miller, Cole, Chalmers etc will hit their shots during the next games. This was the only reason why Chicago was able to take the lead. Don’t get me wrong. The Bulls played great defense. But the shots of the Heat were not contested. They had some much great looks…man!
    Anyway now watch the series get dominated by the Heat. My prediction was Heat in 5 and I’ll stick to it.

    • Pakyaw says:

      Vegas win !..85% bet their money to the miami(facts),.even the odds is favor for Miami by double digit…

    • W/E says:

      Yeah, i think too that the Heat will dominate and win 4 straight and win the series, i felt that they gave the win just like that to the Bulls last night, every possible win by the crippled Bulls is gunna be tatally unexpected,the Heat have no excuses they are a way better team and healthy, if the Bulls manage to win the series that would be absurdly OUTRAGEOUS and the big three should just fly to china this summer and play for the CBA for the rest of their basketball careers.

  56. grampabball13 says:

    The Bulls came out with a TRUE sense of urgency. The Heat won’t lay down though… don’t expect to see them shooting such a low percentage in game 2. With that being said, my hat’s off to Thibs and this “Rag Tag” Chicago Bulls team, for their guts and persistence. They bring a sense of unity with them on each and every night. Playing like a team on a mission, not only to squelch the doubters, but to finish what they have started. No excuses, no quarter excepted. I do know the Heat WILL NOT take this team lightly from this point forward. And not to celebrate yet, can you imagine if the Bulls were at full playing strength? I still think Boozer better step up, we need his scoring against this more talented team. But in the meanwhile… GO BULLS!!!

  57. JimD54 says:

    Chicago scored the last 10 points of the game, that should tell all Heat fans something, the Bulls are not backing down, Lebron wants to play football, the Bulls showed them that they can play rough too, if the refs let them play, the Bulls have a good chance, especially when they get all their pieces back..This is going six, and if the Heat can buck up, maybe seven.

  58. renesausa says:

    … Miami heat or shall i say MIAMI HATE is not invincible…. i salute…the coach….he can make what remains of his pieces …. i had been observing coach Thib He is great….other coaches is at a lose when they lost their superstar…. but not Thibs

  59. Awesome job Bulls-Thib. Nate The Great as known in Boston. Noah has grown into a beast this year. Great game by the whole team, now go finish em off ONE GAME @ A TIME!

  60. HEAT NATION says:

    it is just only game 1..let’s forget it..the remiander of this series will favor to heat like what they did last 2011..miami win series 4-1..let’s go heat..lets burn this bulls and all the freaking fans of bulls..just watch and learn to the upcoming games..i have a lot of faith in miami heat!

    • Long time Bulls fan says:

      If the refs call a fair game the Bulls have a chance. This isn’t the first time the Bulls beat the Heat in a big game this year. I’m sure this game the Heat will double the Bulls in FTs. All Wade does is cry to the refs the whole game. I mean on every play this dude is whining to the refs. Unbelievable! I can’t stand what a baby Wade is. If the game is called like the other night Bulls have a chance. If the Heat get all the BS calls then the Bulls don’t stand a chance.

  61. W/E says:

    OMG, that was unreal, i dont think the Bulls can keep up they are so battered up these guys are SUFFERING,playing full minutes most of them hurt, every win they might take or even close lose its gunna be UNREAL like last night, if the Bulls somehow manage to win the series, which i highly doubt cause the Heat offence is gunna execute better in next games am sure of that, Lebron,Bosh and Dwade should just retire from the NBA and go to China and play for the CBA.

    • sally says:

      your right they won’t be able to keep up before it’s over, the heat just got the cobwebs cleared away last night, it will not continue like that, so get ready dude, and why on earth would they want to go to china and play, their careers are just getting a good start . you obviously don’t watch very much basketball, or else your 16 years old. That would explain the stupidity. Go Heat !!

      • W/E says:

        Dude ur beyond stupid, i said IF the Miami lose the series to this battered up team, which they shouldnt they got excuse even for a single loss, they should better pack up and go to China, the other option is to stay and play for the WNBA and Spelstra should be fired and not be allowed to watch basketball games even from TV, no excuse IF they lose this series.

  62. SIya0023 says:

    Great game for Nate, Noah and hats off to the Thib. Am a serious Miami fan and I think LBJ and the boys took this one lightly and never brought their A-game and D to the court for this game. We were outplayed on the paint and this is a genuine loss thanks to the genius coaching by the Thib and crunch time big plays by Nate. Miami needs to seriously consider their approach and attitudes to this series and losing to a seriously compromised Bulls B Team (not taking away anything from this Bulls Team cuz these guys exhibit the makings of a dorminant team with their unwavering resilience) is pathetic. Miami should treat Chicago with the respect they deserve and should take them as serious contenders, even if they lack D-Rose, Deng and Kirk, this Bulls team is packing serious HEAT.

    Am dissapointed, but, it’s on to the next one……

  63. Gillsy says:

    Is it just me or is this finals one of the most physical in years. The Bulls, Pacers and Warrirs are pounding teams. This physical game for the Bulls is going to make the Heat work and they only have half a team. Being smashed on the boards may catch up with the Heat if they don’t watch it and it ain’t going to get any easier against either the Pacers or Knicks.

  64. epicj says:

    This is an epic win for the Bulls. The Heat may have shown some signs of rust, but overall, the GUTS and HEART of this depleted Bulls squad led them to this win. Great team effort. I love rooting for the Bulls. When they get these key guys back together, they sure will make one heck of a push for the Cup. But I’m sure of this: Miami’s not gonna put their heads down, and we’ll have to be ready for a BIG bounceback game from LeBron.

    KEEP BELIEVING, BULLS NATION!

  65. Peter Ross says:

    The Bulls team was incredible. One of the best team performances I’ve ever seen. I just hope that all NBA teams will give us, the fans, a chance to get more involved in the decision-making management process, just like http://basketball-united.com.

  66. AK says:

    – “Guys are stepping up whenever their name’s called” —

    … except one

  67. pao says:

    Crazy game. The bulls were amazing. Thibs’ the Popovich of the east.

  68. Just gimme the Rock says:

    Hopefully the refs dont help miami win right bulls fans?

    • Never let up says:

      You know that’s way too much to ask for… I will admit I noticed the refs haven’t babied James and Wade AS MUCH in the first 3 quarters of any game in the playoffs so far. Who knows though; maybe Lebron will win his first title this year… “Didn’t he win last year?” He didn’t “win” s***! It was given to him. Which, in my opinion, is an insult to a player as talented as him.

  69. labrada says:

    NATE is BOASTFUL

  70. a best of 7 series is not decided by 1 game..still lot of work to do…hope bulls can sustain that will to win or else it will end at 5 for miami…miami still have the heart of a champion…

  71. mintball says:

    Now that’s what you call great coaching

  72. KB24 says:

    the best of them all…ahahah…ops…was the wrong article….

  73. LordP says:

    An awful performance from all the Heat from the start..i’ve never see them play with the sense of urgency..Wade have to be effective by getting more touch and bosh have to be a presence downlow!!The series just started but I’m confident,Heat in 6!!

    • Chris says:

      Wade was also hurt. Not much of an excuse considering who the heat were playing but it’s worth mentioning. You gotta give Wade credit for playing anyway. Hope chicago can take advantage of that fact though.

  74. nbafan says:

    Hope Nate gets alot of endorsements and a huge salary increase. Rose should hand over his salary and MVP trophy to Nate. Nate is inspirational and I love watching him play!

    • Lolwut says:

      Yeah because Nate stringing together a few great games is MVP worthy. I am in agreeance that Nate is playing great but that is a stupid comment.

      • Sintido kumon says:

        At least he’s playing even when he wasn’t 100 percent,not loke Drose who’s been medically cleared but don’t want to suit up…I hope he doesn’t play,coz he’s not worth it…his team mates worked hard to get here and he’ll get the spotlight if he plays,which for me is a very selfish decision if he does play…

      • eris says:

        To be fair, if it’s between D.Rose and Nate, then obviously it would go to Nate. Rose has literally done nothing of value for the Bulls this season

  75. Asian Boy!!! says:

    Keep it up Bulls…. nice one…

  76. Franz says:

    Great win by the Bulls, but don’t get too excited. One game does not make a series. I’ll start celebrating when Miami gather their fishing rods.

  77. Alex says:

    In all liklihood this was a one-and-done deal. Miami won’t be coming out and underestimating the resilliance and heart of Chicago again. I do hope however that this is an ongoing trend: that Chicago, with energy, drive, and belief can defeat the Heat in 6 or 7 games. It would make by basketball year to see them ousted so early and simultaneously see that hard work and trust win out over big stars, talent, and yes some egos. Alas, I don’t expect it. But I have every hope that Miami rethinks their attitude should they lose, especially after Dwayne Wade’s “no comment” and smirk response to Jennings’s, however misguided, boast.

    Here’s to Chicago and heart I’ve not seen since Dallas 2 years ago, and rarely see in general within the NBA.

  78. Oe\riga says:

    Bulls in 6 at most…….I am damn sure about this and Rose might make an appearance next game as rumoured.

    • Kei says:

      Dream on, weak minded Rose won’t come back. The leader from now on will be Noah.

    • thejerr says:

      real good game to watch. as for derek rose comin back….. no, stay on the bench. he should have been playing weeks ago. to bad imo

    • One of the king's subjects says:

      Its one game, Miami has been in worse situations. Chicago won are 1-0 in the sereis, ooohhh, in ’91 the Lakers were 1-0 in the series agianst Chicago, hell last year the thunder were 1-0 in the series against Miami. with or without rose ( which if he were to return he would’ve done it in game 7 against the Nets) Miami is more than capabale of beating this team. It will be Miami in 6 at the most.

  79. Dirk45 says:

    Thibs is the best coach without a ring to me. Hats off to the Bulls and make it another three times this series.

    • ***** says:

      So true. I don’t want to hear another word about Coach Spo. He just got outcoached yet again by Thibs. Coach Spo couldn’t do anything with the Heat when he had one legitimate superstar in Dwayne Wade. He had to wait until he had three superstars on his team before he could dominate. Thibs on the other hand is down three starters, one of which is a superstar, and he gets the job done.

    • One Hit Wonder says:

      thats an in sult to Jerry sloan man. lol. maybe 2nd?

  80. Chris says:

    Miami bandwagoners responded to this like they lost the whole series. Chicago fans responded to it as if they won the whole thing. Impressive win for Chicago but they still need to win 3 more. Regardless though, this series just became a hell of a lot more interesting

  81. Jimmy Buckets says:

    SO i heard we were gonna get swept…lol

  82. Bespoken says:

    Great win! Nate’s a beast down the stretch. Nate’s not playing that out of hand in this game. Miami got to start take Nate seriously or they’ll be in trouble. Still, Lebron was great as well, those and-1s! I haven’t see anyone in a long time can get the and-1 despite someone full speed wrap around his body.

  83. zeero says:

    great win…..hope we can retaliate next game

    • Another Heat Fan says:

      The bulls did great. I watched the game.
      As coach spo said afterwards, we were up in the 4th quarter. In fact, we were dominating the 4th quarter well playing much better basketball but the bulls made alot of clutch 3s. In the playoffs, anything can happen. Any team can be better than any other team for 5 minutes. ESPECIALLY in the playoffs, which always requires a bit of luck.

      But really, and i’m not taking anything away from the bulls on this or anything, the more major reason the bulls won was Heat rust. The Heat were really bad the first 2 quarters, and still they were on top at the end of the third.
      There were a lot of missed open shots. They could have entered the fourth with a 12 point lead, and then the bulls would cut it to 2 but not in time, and no one would care much because the headline would read “Heat take game 1, stop Bulls rally”.

      As a Heat fan, i’m not phased. I’m kinda glad this happened actually. This is a reminder, that this is the playoffs, and no matter how much any team was cruising in the season, you still gotta play your best in the playoffs. Better this “rusty” game happens now than in the finals.

      • bulls says:

        a loss is a loss. a win is a win. The better team win. No need for u to explain anything in details.

      • bulls says:

        if u explain how a fully loaded Heat lost, then explain how an underman team won.

  84. JimD54 says:

    Does Nate Robinson know how to say renegotiate?