|Written by Michael|
Bet on the NBAIt is almost impossible to deny that this year's Chicago Bulls is a very special team.
After over a decade of subpar performances, the fans have learned to look backward to the Michael Jordan era rather than ahead to any current postseason success. But this year, all of that changed with the team winning 62 games and earning the top playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
The reason for the Bulls' phenomenal success this season can be summed up in two words and one acronym: Derrick Rose MVP. At the beginning of the season, the MVP talk was all about probably LeBron James, possibly Kobe Bryant, maybe Dwight Howard. Rose's name was never mentioned as even an MVP contender, let alone the runaway favorite.
But Rose has led this young Chicago Bulls team to heights that have not been attained since the last time Chicago won an NBA Championship. They go into the playoffs with not only the best record in the Eastern Conference, but the best regular season record in the league. The San Antonio Spurs fell to 61-21, and have suffered from numerous late-season injuries.
In fact, the Bulls are the one team that have consistently played well in the latter part of the regular season, experiencing no embarrassing losing streaks. The same can not be said for the Celtics, Heat, Spurs, Lakers, or Mavericks, all of which dropped a few disappointing games they were expected to win. The Bulls stand basically alone in the late regular season for their consistency.
Entering the playoffs, the Bulls take on the No. 8 Indiana Pacers in the first round. With the way the Bulls are playing, expect a sweep or close to it. The Pacers finished the season under .500 with a 37-45 record. While they are strong at home with a 24-17 record, their road record of 13-28 will create a problem winning games against Chicago, which is 36-5 at the United Center.
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