By Shawn Muller–

CHICAGO (CBS) The Chicago Bulls are moving on to the second round of the 2011 NBA Playoffs after posting a 116-89 beat down over the Indiana Pacers to win the series 4-1.

I think it is safe to say that last night’s performance by the Bulls is what many of us were expecting to see all series long. Chicago dominated the game from the opening tip-off to the final buzzer and it was clear that Indiana had no business even being on the same court as the Bulls.

The game was a joy to watch, make no doubt about it.

But it was the comments about Bulls center Joakim Noah, coming out of Pacers forward Danny Granger’s mouth after the game–not the final score–that had my full attention.

Apparently, Mr. Granger believed that Mr. Noah was playing dirty.

He felt that Noah threw an intentional elbow at Pacers forward Josh McRoberts, which caused McRoberts to retaliate and eventually get ejected from the game. Granger believed Noah’s “actions” were “cowardly” and he “just [doesn’t] think that the game should be played that way,” when discussing the mini melee with reporters after the game.

So let me get this straight:

An Indiana Pacers player was complaining that a Chicago Bulls player was out there throwing “cheap-shots?”

Talk about the pot calling the kettle black, Danny, because there is no way that any Indiana player has any room to complain about apparent cheap-shots.

Does the name Jeff Foster not ring a bell?

How easy it is for Granger to forget that it was his own teammate that was mauling Derrick Rose every time he drove to the bucket in the first three games. How easy is it to forget that it was the Pacers’ own Jeff Foster who threw a nice little elbow into the side of Luol Deng’s head on a drive to the bucket in Game 3.

This was a physical series–with the physical play being instituted by the Pacers–and in the end, the better team won. The difference, however, is that Chicago didn’t fall for the Indiana tactics. Not one time did any Bulls player get tossed from a game because the refs failed to call a flagrant foul.

Any person who watched this series knows that at least three such flagrant fouls could–and probably should–have been called on Foster alone.

Don’t take your ball and go home, Danny. You sound like a sore-loser who should be playing in an elementary school league.

The funny thing is that even your own teammate, the man who was directly involved in the play with Noah, the man who got kicked out of the game for trying to retaliate, disagrees with your statements.

McRoberts said, “it’s part of the game. I’m not going to say it’s dirty, it’s part of basketball.” Even if Noah did elbow McRoberts intentionally, McRoberts knew that it was a part of the game…just like I am sure you feel about the way your own Jeff Foster was playing.

Crying about the situation–or should I say non-situation–after your team has already been eliminated isn’t going to do anything.

Granger should know this.

I wouldn’t have a problem with him wanting to stick up for his teammate if everyone knew that McRoberts had been mauled by Noah. But when the person directly involved in the play says that he has no problem with it…why should anyone else.

Thank goodness last night was the last time we ever have to hear about the Indiana Pacers again this season. They played very well in the series against the Bulls so I tip my cap to them. But that doesn’t change the fact that they were like that annoying little rash that just wouldn’t go away.

Thank goodness they finally have.

Do you agree with Shawn? Post your comments below.

Shawn Muller

Shawn Muller has lived in the great city of Chicago for 7 years. He is a 2002 graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and, in October of 2010, Shawn received his certificate in radio broadcasting. In his free time, Shawn enjoys spending time with his wife Melissa and 3 year old daughter Ava, catching any live sporting event, and traveling. Check out his radio show, Grab Some Bench with Muller and Bangser” every Thursday night at 8:30 P.M., at