What a beautiful day in Chicago. The sun is out, the flowers are in full bloom, Richard M. Daley is still mayor. It's like 1998, all over again.
I approached last night's game with calm confidence, knowing that what the Bulls showed us in Game 5's 4th quarter was the Bulls we expect to see in the playoffs. Last night, they annihilated the Hawks. It was like watching North Carolina play North Carolina Wilmington. The Hawks (at home) looked shaken by the Bulls skill, precision and talent. And I believe the Heat will have that same shaken look.
And about that playoff matchup: If I were Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah, I might take offense to the pompous and disrespectul display that LeBron James made after defeating the Celtics. He knelt down at center court, holding back his emotions. Dwyane Wade came over, hugged him with extreme passion and affection. "We did it!!!!" Yeah, you did it. You beat a team in the semifinals. Celebrate in private.
To me, they are taking for granted the rest of the playoffs, as if beating the Celtics = winning the championship. If I were Coach Thibs, I would put that celebration on a loop in the locker room. Not in my house. Not on my watch. Kurt Thomas, ice up those elbows.
Here are some other random observations from last night's game:
- If Steve Kerr was in love with the Hawks in Game 5, ESPN Color Commentator Hubie Brown was over the moon with the Bulls in Game 6. Now Hawks' fans, do you know what I mean? That must have been annoying to watch if you were in Atlanta. But you could tell that Hubie was genuinely impressed with the Bulls fundamentals.
- Hey, when does that new Green Lantern movie come out? I feel like it's not being cross promoted enough on sports television.
- Wow, they really don't like Josh Smith in Atlanta. That guy needs to leave that team. He plays hard and whenever he shoots a jumper, the crowd boos him. It's the playoffs. They are in Game 6. Boo time is really reserved for teams that underachieve. If anything, Smith and the Hawks overachieved. I'll bet he could roll out to Denver or Golden State and get more love. He's a home grown kid, right?
- Here's my summary of the Hawks' starting five: Teague = good, get rid of Hinrich. Johnson = good, but doesn't drive the basket. He's sort of a bigger Ben Gordon. Smith = explosively mediocre. Horford = reminds me of Derrick McKey, but better looking. Collins = scrub, need better production from the center position. Overall, this team could be much better with a strong big man. Bring Dwight Howard to ATL? Might be championship caliber.
- Boozer - let it raiiiin! He hits those shots in this next round and we have a Finals berth awaiting us.
- Derrick Rose's brother has a warrant out for his arrest because he went to the game on Tuesday instead of showing up in court. Still think it was probably thet right call. If my brother was playing pro ball, I might slide on a court date, too.
- Finally, the ESPN sideline reporter asked Derrick Rose (after the game) about who Chicago is going to be rooting for. Will it be you, Derrick Rose or the other Chicagoan Dwyane Wade. Seriously? That's your question? Have you ever been to Chicago? Nobody outside of Wade's friends, family and lawyers root for him. He's not a Chicago sports icon. He lived here. And after last summer's free agent fiasco, I think Bulls' fans couldn't care less about the Miami star. Worst question ever.