Bulls fail to clinch Round 1 series despite GREAT effort…

BULLS 4 LIFEThere is a quadruple header of Round One playoff games taking place on sports television tonight.  The first two games up feature Boston vs. New York and Atlanta vs. Indiana.  Both of these do or die game 6’s are on the underdog teams’ home court.  I was most excited to watch the Boston/New York game, thinking that Boston would really give the Knicks a hard run, considering the heartfelt game 5 they took in New York.  Boy was I wrong!  After Boston only scored 10 points in the first quarter and went down 14, I decided that this game was not going to be an exciting one after all and I switched over to the Hawks/Pacers game.  That game stayed pretty close after one, so again I thought, ‘cool THIS will be a good game.  I’ll keep it here.’  Well, then the 2nd quarter came around where Atlanta only scored 9 points.  It was obvious that they were quickly falling apart.  Both of these games really highlighted how incredibly strong my BULLS team really is.  Last night, as I watched my boys play with not just one guy out, but THREE guys out (Derrick Rose, Kirk Hinrich, Luol Deng) & 3 others playing ill or injured (Taj Gibson, Nate Robinson, & Joakim Noah) I didn’t fully appreciate their effort.  Not only did they play with so much passion & heart, but they managed to make a real game of it.  Brooklyn played with all of their stars and offensively were very strong.  Maybe we couldn’t keep up with them offensively and maybe our defense wasn’t as strong as it usually is, but my boys only lost by 3 points.  What does that say about my BULLS team??  It says that they CAN take this series.  It says that they are a tough-as-nails group that sticks together, plays for each other, and can truly beat anyone!!  The ‘next guy up’ mentality that our fantastic Coach Thibs has instilled in this team is so key to their success.  They want to win for each other, for their fans, & for the city of Chicago.  If my team can play that hard with so many men down and come close to a win, I can only hope for the very best with a somewhat healthy group of guys in Game 7.  Where is this heart & passion from Boston & Atlanta tonight??  Is Boston’s excuse injury and age?  Do the Atlanta players not care because most of them won’t be back with this organization next year??  Seeing these teams play so badly tonight gave me a completely different perspective on what could happen tomorrow in my game.  During Game 6, I was miserable.  I was certain that they would lose before the game even started, knowing how many guys we were missing.  I didn’t even give them a chance.  And I don’t know why I felt that way.  I’ve been watching them and pulling for them all year.  A negative cloud came over me, but thanks to these crappy games tonight, I have a renewed faith and hope that they WILL be able to pull the win off against Brooklyn tomorrow night.  Derrick may still be out, but his presence on the bench is a huge lift to his teammates.  That is very obvious.  And come on, how can I not believe that they’re going to win when my boy, Jo, declared today ‘We’re going to win’!!  Dammit, they are!!!

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