By Adam Harris–

United Center – So much for team loyalty. Miami forwards Chris Bosh, and Juwan Howard both said they would give their MVP vote to Bulls guard Derrick Rose.

“I think it’s close, but I think I would give it to Derrick if I were a voter,” Bosh said today after the morning shoot around. “He’s playing well, he’s playing like the best point guard in the league and the best player in the league. He is the MOST VALUABLE PLAYER. If you really think about it, if you take him out of the lineup there’s no telling what they will do.”

Bosh and Howard do deserve some credit, for voicing their opinion. They showed that a player can have non-bias approach to who the NBA’s Most Valuable Player is.

“If Rose continues to play at a high level, of course I would vote for Rose,” Howard said. “I’m thinking about it from a basketball standpoint. No favoritism or anything like that. It’s my opinion and I’ll stick by it…Rose is a guy who has put his team in a great position to win. They’ve been playing good basketball all season long despite the injuries and I think a big reason for their success is credit to him.”

There is, however an influential voice on the Heat that disagreed with his other teammates. His vote stays with his teammate LeBron James.

“Derrick’s having a great year,” Heat guard Dwayne Wade said. “I don’t have a vote, but of course Derrick is one of the front runners. You have to finish out this year strong. Of course I believe LeBron is a front runner as well. Them two guys are the leaders for this MVP run, but I’m going to be bias and choose my teammate, no question about it. So you can’t ask me this.”

Now that you have read the Heat’s very high opinion on Derrick Rose, it’s time to focus on the game tonight. Last time the Heat came into Chicago, the Bulls won on a late three by Kyle Korver set up by an offensive rebound; however, the Heat did not have LeBron James or Chris Bosh in their lineup.

“They got a win here last time,” Wade said…”I thought we played very well, especially with LeBron and Chris being out I thought we gave ourselves a chance to win…We understand this game will come down to the fourth quarter and we’ll be prepared for it.”

This game is important for both teams who are fighting for the top spot in the east, and home court advantage throughout the playoffs. Currently the Bulls are third in the east, three games behind Boston and Miami who are tied for the top rank. With only 27 games left, expect tonight game to be hard fought.

“Of course you always want the tiebreakers [to go your way],” Wade said. “Tonight I’m sure they [Bulls] will come out very aggressive, especially after losing that game last night, but we are going to come out aggressive as well. This is going to be a great Eastern Conference battle, versus two teams that are in the top tier in the league. We are looking each other in the face as far as identity, and in the way we win. We are looking forward to it.”

Tonight, just as last Thursday night against the San Antonio Spurs, all eyes will be on Chicago. The Bulls will try to defend their home court, and their identity against a Heat team which they beat last time without LeBron James and Chris Bosh. This could be a measuring stick for the Bulls moving forward.

Tip off is at 7 and is on TNT.

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