Efficiency, rebounding and defense win you playoff games! Everybody has always seen me as anti – Derrick Rose, I thought he was absolutely brilliant Thursday night…you know why? Cause he only shot 14 times and made 8 of them had 12 assists and almost no turnovers. Efficiency wins championships! Not breaking ankles, not 38 points on 12 for 29 shooting with 9 turnovers that the rest of the media fails to make a big deal off.
Basketball fans, more than any fan base, get fooled by the wrong stuff because you have younger fans – you can look at all the numbers over at ESPN, 20 year olds and early 30’s love the NBA…60 year olds don’t. 60 year olds have been around for a while, so they don’t fall for the bling and the fun…they don’t care! If you go look at the Chicago Bulls – and as I said all year long, the numbers didn’t lie – the plus/minus numbers that is.
When Derrick Rose sat down, the team was not significantly worse – now they obviously wouldn’t be as good without Derrick, but when he sits down for 4 or 5 minutes, the plus/minus numbers tell you that the Bull players play better defense – knowing that they have to without Derrick and they pass more – knowing they have to without Derrick, and so they are pretty much the same team.
Now in the long-run, you want Derrick out there. But this Bulls team, really at their best – and Thursday night they were fantastic, when they play great defense, when a #2 guy can score, maybe even#2 or #3 like a Boozer or Deng and Derrick only has to shoot 16 or 18 times? That’s how they can beat the Miami Heat. They’ve got no shot at beating Miami if Derrick is jacking up 32 shots a game.
And I know that you’ll be the first to go to twitter and email me saying “Rose scores 44…he’s amazing!” Brotha, you’re not beating Miami shooting 36% from the floor because Lebron is going to shoot 49%, D-Wade is going to shoot 46%, Bosh will shoot 42% and Chicago’s star is shooting 36%? You’re going to get absolutely swept!
But Thursday night, the Bulls showed that they have a chance at beating the Heat. Now, I’ll take Miami to win the series because I think that Miami just has more talent and in the NBA, stars get the calls, star’s create openings, you can do all the match ups you want, I’ve got Lebron and D-Wade…you’ve got Rose and Rose is younger. But here’s why I think it’s a very unique situation in sports – and this happened during the football season.
It is very rare in sports, where the more talented team thinks they are getting dissed, it can be said they have a bigger chip on their shoulder. Like my New York Jets, who have more talent than New England – You take out Tom Brady, Jets are better across the board. The Jets went into that game with more overall talent, as a big underdog…people thought that they would get blown out! Whenever you can go into a game with more good players and achip on your shoulder, that’s a good spot to be in.
It generally works in sports that you have a favourite and then you have an underdog – and the underdog thinks “we’re not getting respect” Occasionally, the team with better players is getting less respect. Think about this Miami/Chicago series.
Ohhh, Miami is not in a good mood. Lebron got left off of 9 MVP ballots and guess who’s coming to town? The 22 year old MVP!! Think Lebron has something to prove? D-Wade, despite better stats across the board than Kobe, didn’t even get voted onto 1st team all NBA. Think D-Wade has got a little to prove? Chicago beat Miami all regular season “you can’t win the close games against the Bulls” is what the Heat have been hearing for 3 months.
So this is a rare spot, where I get the team with superstars and they are coming in with a big chip on their shoulders. The 22 year old won the MVP and those veteran players – who are more complete players, got left off entire MVP ballots? Didn’t even make 1st team all NBA? The Miami Heat are the New York Jets, they’ve got better players and they are in a foul mood. So that’s the reason why I like Miami in this series.
I do think Chicago wins Game 1 and then I think Miami takes over the series. It will be great, I found Chicago/Atlanta hard to watch, I really did – I thought the game was over about 7 minutes in, I thought Chicago was about as good as Chicago is going to get. I’m not sure if Carlos Boozer is going to ever give you a shooting night like that – but it doesn’t matter, he did and they won!
One of the things that you learn about the NBA is that as much as all the things – you think Jimmer is going to make it and it really comes down to 1 or 2 things in the NBA and you know, defense is huge, but stars create oppourtunities to score and Carlos Boozer is not going to get any open looks in this series, Lebron is, D-Wade is, Derrick Rose is. So I have two guys that will get open looks and you’ve got one! That’s why – if you look at the history of the NBA, the team doesn’t beat the stars…they just don’t! The history of the league is that if you have the two best players in the league, you beat a team with the best player in the league – that’s just the way the NBA’s always worked.
People love Chicago, people hate and resent Miami, so Miami is going in hated and nobody is rooting for them, now people are even banging on Miami’s celebration!! Now they’re banging on their apology!! So Miami wins…and people are STILL un-satisfied. “ahh you celebrate too much” So all this criticism of Miami is just giving more wood to the fire. And here’s another question: Will Derrick Rose – he’s a young kid, when Wade and Lebron are going off – and they need to in order for Miami to win. The stats show you that when they go off Miami wins, is Derrick Rose going to be satisfied 5 or 6 games into this series because the Bulls AREN’T better when he goes off? What if he’s dropping 20 and their dropping 38 and they’re getting all the love? Will the young guy let his ego get in the way and start jacking up shots to prove “hey, I’m as good as those guys” I like all the intangibles and all the emotions vested between the two teams in this series, should be a fun one to watch!