By David Schuster–
CHICAGO (WSCR) Backs up against the wall, do or die and even win or go home. All the cliches apply tonight as the Bulls try and stave off elimination in their series against Miami. Talk to any player and they say their confidence is still sky high but the reality is that the collective confidence of this team has taken a hit with three straight losses. They have been talking a good game the last couple of days, but doubt surely must be cropping in.
The Bulls had chances to win all three games they lost, but failed to produce when the game was on the line. Very simply, Miami’s star power came through while Derrick Rose and his teammates wilted down the stretch.
LeBron James has again proved that he is the best player on the planet, and talent prevails at this time of the year in the NBA. James has been magnificent on both ends of the court. Offensively, he can get a shot off anytime he wants, and defensively, he’s put the clamps on Rose in the game’s final minutes.
Go back to Game 4 and you’ll see James draped all over Rose, who settled for outside shots as opposed to driving to the basket. Yes, Rose hit those shots during the regular season, but now he’s being faced with trying to do them against a player who is seven inches taller then him. Rose would never admit this, but it sure looks like he is intimidated when James is guarding him.
In order for the Bulls to win tonight and extend this series, they will have to play a near perfect game on both ends of the court. Their defense must force turnovers leading to easy baskets and they have to get better performances from some guys who have given them little in this series.
A win tonight could give the Bulls a boost and help regain some lost confidence, but talk is cheap, they have to do it on the court.