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Does Bulls’ sweep of Heat this season matter now?

May 13, 2011, 3:02 PM EDT

Chicago Bulls v Atlanta Hawks - Game Six Getty Images

The Bulls and Heat met three times in the regular season. Three times the Bulls won, a couple of close games and one pretty comfortably. Derrick Rose had big games, Chris Bosh struggled.

But don’t make the mistake of thinking that matters much now.

For one, the most recent of those games was in March and the Heat are a very different team right now. The amazing Tom Haberstroh explains at ESPN.

When you look at the Heat’s most used lineups against the Bulls this season, something immediately jumps out at you: None of them will play in this series…

Who was the center in the Heat’s most frequent five? Erick Dampier, a guy who hasn’t seen the court in over a month.… The next most used lineup against the Bulls features Mike Miller, who has been all but squeezed out of the Heat’s rotation. If Miller plays in this series, it will be only in cameos due to his battered thumbs that render his hands barely functional. The third most used lineup? Carlos Arroyo was in it.

The playoffs are all about matchups. The Heat will lean heavily on Mario Chalmers — their best defensive point guard — and Joel Anthony this series. They will dare the Bulls to make them pay for going small. (If Erik Spoelstra leans heavily on Mike Bibby against Rose, well, that’s not going to really happen for long.)

It should also be noted that LeBron James didn’t play in the first game and Bosh got injured and missed part of that first game. In another, Bosh went 1-for-18. while the Bulls may make him struggle, don’t expect that level of futility again.

One thing Bulls fans do want to try and take away from the regular season — Rose gave the Heat trouble. He averaged 29 points on 43 percent shooting — not the most efficient numbers ever, but the Heat are a good defensive team. When Rose was on the court against the Heat this season, the Bulls played better on offense than most teams did against Miami in terms of points per possession (just slightly, about 2 points per 100 possessions, but that’s still something).

This Bulls vs. Heat series is going to be fantastic. But don’t expect it to look a lot like the regular season.

  1. mondzy805 - May 13, 2011 at 3:16 PM

    It’s about to be Crygate Pt.2, when this series is over in 7. Go Bulls.

    • pl4tinum514 - May 13, 2011 at 4:24 PM

      If Chicago can’t stop them, nobody will except maybe Oklahoma.

      All it’ll take is one flailing Joakim Noah elbow to Lebron’s face to get it done.

      • slopmcflop - May 13, 2011 at 5:17 PM

        Bad, bad pl4tinum514.

        I don’t care how much you want a team to win/lose, don’t wish for injuries.

  2. scorp16 - May 13, 2011 at 3:42 PM

    In response to the title of the article……No

    It will matter about as much as the Celtics 3-1 advantage over the Heat going into round 2 of the playoffs. That didn’t work out terribly well in the Celtics favor.

  3. jdiguido - May 13, 2011 at 3:59 PM

    It matters in the sense that the Bulls now have home-court.

  4. edweird0 - May 13, 2011 at 4:44 PM

    It most certainly will not!

  5. dolphinphan - May 13, 2011 at 5:46 PM

    ask the celtics how looking back the regular season panned out

  6. kinggw - May 13, 2011 at 6:13 PM

    Like other posters have mentioned the regular season sweep means nothing. If anything those games shows that it takes a perfect storm for the Bulls to win. In one game, Lebron didnt play and Bosh got hurt. In another game Bosh went 1-17, not because of suffocating defense, he was just bricking open shots. Do you think those things are really going to happen again, four times?

    To this point the Bulls havent played anyone in the playoffs that will present the same challenges the Heat do. Conversely, the Heat have played teams that mirror the Bulls greatest assets. The Sixers were a team with great energy and heart. The Celtics were a solid team with a great defense and good size. At the end of both series, those things didnt matter. These playoffs have given us lots of surprises, I wouldnt expect one from this series Heat in 6.

  7. philtration - May 13, 2011 at 6:33 PM

    No it does not mater unless you consider that it was the Bulls that made them cry.
    That moment alone showed that Miami is an emotionally weak team.
    They did not handle the pressure well this season.
    They did not handle the expectations well right from the start with their stupid catwalk show and then the finger pointing that followed when they got off to a slow start.
    They tried to pass the blame off on their coach instead of owning their record and admitting that they had to step it up themselves.
    They do not handle losses very well and they do not handle winning like grown men or professionals. Look at the way they acted like a bunch of 18 year olds after beating Boston.

    The Bulls are mentally and emotionally stronger than the Heat, they are deeper than the Heat, they are better coached than the Heat and over all they are more talented than the Heat.
    They had the better record during the season, they have home court advantage and they swept the Heat in their head to head games this year.
    Why does anyone think that this series is going to be easy for Miami?

    • cordae - May 14, 2011 at 8:20 AM

      Theres only one thing I agree with you on, they’re deeper than the heat. Other than that, you’re a damn fool if you think they’re the first ones to cry in a locker room (yes, even for the regular season). They’re just the first ones with a dumb enough coach to tell it to the world. But Every factor you just named has nothing to do with the playoffs. I know thats your home team and all but, get real…

      • philtration - May 14, 2011 at 8:49 PM

        Yeah… I am a damn fool.
        So the Heat are better coached than the Bulls?
        Do they have home court advantage over the Bulls?
        They did NOT lose all the games against the Bulls this year?
        The Bulls talent off the bench are not light years better than the Heat’s bench players?

        I made all of that up?
        Take your own advice about getting real.

  8. zblott - May 13, 2011 at 7:33 PM

    Bulls vs. Heat preview

    http://www.behindthebasket.com/btb/2011/5/13/bulls-vs-heat-eastern-conference-finals-preview.html

  9. uraduntx - May 13, 2011 at 7:37 PM

    boston wasnt the same team in the post season without rondo. all of the games were close till the end when boston showed their age. with a healthy rondo the series could still be going. miami was way to excited after the boston series they acted like beatin boston was their championship. and you can bet not beating chicago is in their head and until they beat them 1 time it still will be. chicago is alot younger than boston and will pose a bigger defensive threat. boston may have wore them down physically and mentally judging from the celebration after the series.

  10. crnvic847 - May 13, 2011 at 8:00 PM

    I am sick and tired of all these sports writers and media kissing the Miami Heat’s a@&!!! When the Bulls take this series in 5 maybe they will all realize that the Miami Heat “are who we thought they were!” Bulls vs Mavericks finals!

  11. dirtybird2020 - May 13, 2011 at 10:22 PM

    Dolphinphan is a idiot, do you even watch basketball?!? First off you from the dump known as miami, second boston didnt have a heathy big man shaq was another key( theres a reaaon perkins was traded , cause shaq was holding it down), second rondo was injured as seen on tv, they won the last game really considering the horrible calls( foot out of bounce on a pass from bosh resulting in a 3, a and1 on big baby clearly wasnt traveling, pierce called for a travel when clearly stopped on dime), …..

    • dolphinphan - May 14, 2011 at 10:54 AM

      hey dirtybird F*** you.

      And the falcons suck my man.

    • dolphinphan - May 14, 2011 at 10:57 AM

      and another thing, proofread what you write, cause you either come off as an uneducated adult, or a 7th grader.

  12. dirtybird2020 - May 13, 2011 at 10:31 PM

    Rose is averging more points per game, and anyone who thinks lebron is the answer to guarding rose is insane huge mismatch as seen last year vs cavs, and if wade guards rose expect no offense, xhalmers is the best option but still cant hang, our big men will eat them upin on boards and defense in the paint, boston dont protect the paint like the bulls, wade lives in paint, bench is too deep on bulls roster compared to a bench who dont even know if their gonna play on a nightly basis, 1234567 rings is a joke who ever said that, first off got five years left, no monet for improcemnet on bench, their bench is always gonna be bottom feeders,bulls beat them 1 game without noah, and one game when boozer first came back from not playing! Bulls in 6, this reg season is irrealient! Bibby is a true bum fits in on that team though expect him not to even play in a defensive series unless korbers guardong him lol

  13. therookie773 - May 14, 2011 at 1:11 AM

    There have been surprising upsets in these playoffs and I’m not surprised if Miami takes out Chicago since Chicago didn’t really breeze by the first two teams. I have a good feeling this matchup will go to a game 7.

  14. passerby23 - May 14, 2011 at 2:09 AM

    Ask the Boston Celtics whether their domination of the Heat in the regular season mattered in the playoffs. Ask the LA Lakers whether their season series win over Dallas mattered in the playoffs. The Heat-Bulls games were close and the regular season means very little. Even if the Heat lose, the regular season still has no bearing.

  15. emoreira1969 - May 14, 2011 at 5:53 AM

    Wow! Some of these bulls fans are hateful. Apparently my Heat makes u uncomfortable. Dont worry, u have 7 games to prove ur better. I think the bulls will give us a run. Should be a fun series. Win or lose, its been a fun year. And the least u can say about the Heat is that they give u something else to watch. Right?

  16. budrow - May 14, 2011 at 6:06 AM

    dolphinfan

    Oh yeah! Get ready for some grade A punishment Chicago, Miami is on fire and Chicago struggled with the Pacers. Fear Joel “The Warden” Anthony, he’s Noah without all the shrieking and useless chest pounding, The Warden is a cool customer that let’s his hustle speak louder than his bravado. Rose can have his MVP and will be able to go home and start shining it in, let’s say . . . 5-6 games.

  17. olsherm - May 14, 2011 at 1:50 PM

    dirtybird2020 the heat don’t have a key big man or a key pg so now what’s your excuse.

  18. olsherm - May 14, 2011 at 1:56 PM

    crnvic847 the sportswriters are finally giving the heat the props they need and I’m not even from anywhere close to Florida.

  19. philtration - May 14, 2011 at 11:55 PM

    If Miami had swept the Bulls this season then this story would be all about how they have the Bulls number and they have the mental edge because of that.
    I also keep seeing that the Heat are 23-5 since losing to the Bulls in March so that proves that they not the same team.

    The Bulls have gone 28-5 since that game.

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