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Bulls-Nets Game 7: Who’s tougher? (Probably the team with a player in the hospital and another who can barely walk)

May 4, 2013, 2:00 PM EDT

Brooklyn Nets v Chicago Bulls - Game Six Getty Images

Generally, I’d be inclined to say a team that fights back from a 3-1 series deficit is tougher than the team blowing the advantage.

But this Bulls-Nets series feels much, much different.

No matter what happens at 8 p.m. tonight, Chicago showed its toughness by putting together a strong season without Derrick Rose and winning three playoff games even as the rest of the team falls apart due to injury. K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune:

Luol Deng remains at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago after experiencing complications from the spinal tap administered to test for viral meningitis and obviously won’t play in Saturday’s Game 7.

“He’s still not feeling well, so that’s a concern,” coach Tom Thibodeau said.

According to two people who spoke to Deng, the forward was alarmed and upset by the side effects from the procedure, which featured disorientation and an unsteady gait after fluid was drained from his lower back.

Hinrich wore a large ice pack on the leg as he limped out of shootaround.

Based on talking to Tom Thibodeau and seeing Kirk Hinrich, Johnson concluded:

Hinrich most likely out.

Before the series began, I picked the Bulls in seven games. I originally typed Nets in seven, but I began pondering a Game 7. As I thought then, Chicago has a coaching advantage and a toughness advantage, and it’s difficult to see the team with those edges losing the deciding game.

But injuries to Deng and Hinrich loom large.

Though he hasn’t shot well this series, Deng is an essential ingredient to a Bulls offense lacking reliable scorers. Without him on the court, the Bulls’ offensive rating is just 93.3.

Hinrich’s defense of Deron Williams has also been pivotal. The Bulls’ defensive rating without Hinrich is a whopping 112.2.

Of course, Andray Blatche, expert on all things resolve, seized this opportunity to put down the Bulls. Blatche, via Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News:

“We’re tougher than that team.”

The Nets have certainly shown toughness in climbing back from their 3-1 deficit, and win or lose, this test bodes well for their future. These Brooklyn players needed playoff experience together, and they’re getting it against a team that demands the Nets play their best to win.

Apparently, that has given Blatche the confidence to say what he did. Will that be enough to reach the second round? Thibodeau, via Johnson:

“It’s not about who’s saying what. It’s about putting work in.”

  1. Mr. Wright 212 - May 4, 2013 at 2:04 PM

    Nets will still find a way to lose. It is what they do.

    • kingbeason52 - May 4, 2013 at 2:11 PM

      Knicks are overrated and have a flase sense of entitlement. It is who they are.

      • money2long - May 4, 2013 at 2:35 PM

        how have the knicks acted entitled ? and entitled in what sense?
        the only thing i’ve sen the knicks do is believe in the talent they have because well, they have talented players.

      • Mr. Wright 212 - May 6, 2013 at 12:42 PM

        Overrated by whom? So you hate the Knicks, that’s fine, but at least have a basis for your buffoonish commentary and failed attempts at humor, instead of throwing sht against the wall and hoping it sticks.

    • Kevin S. - May 4, 2013 at 5:08 PM

      You win one playoff series in this century and it all goes to your head.

      • Mr. Wright 212 - May 6, 2013 at 12:41 PM

        Kevin S. please.

  2. eboneseagles - May 4, 2013 at 2:04 PM

    BK is a p*ussy team, a bunch of overpayed brats sitting under a crazy Russian overlord. They think they can trot into NYC and take it over, but they’ll always play 3rd fiddle to the knicks and even the Liberty.

    • huey88 - May 4, 2013 at 4:38 PM

      Lol yea right, we are on par with the Knicks..people need to stop hating on BK because we have had a good season, how are we brats? what have we said to act like that…dress in all black to insinuate that we are goona bury the Bulls..o wait..the other NY team did that.

      • eboneseagles - May 4, 2013 at 5:23 PM

        Lol the nets whole thing this post season was the black out in Brooklyn you fool. Meaning dressing in all black. Also lol at the nets being on par with the knicks! Ask anyone who’d they rather play… You don’t even have to guard 40% of the nets starting lineup!

      • huey88 - May 4, 2013 at 5:41 PM

        Theres a difference in blackout in Brooklyn and black uniforms and telling the media the team is goona show up to the arena dressed in all black because there is goona be a funeral…a big difference…and the Nets have gotten to where we are off of pure talent, being as our coach has no idea what he’s doing and is gone at the end of the season. I’ll take that for the season and get a real coach next year.

      • itsthemelman82 - May 4, 2013 at 11:14 PM

        Brooklyn is the only boro thinking they bigger than the rest of the city… NYC>BK Knicks>Nets but, as a Bulls fan I’m just thinkin bout round 2! Lets go Bulls

  3. jhuck92 - May 4, 2013 at 2:39 PM

    I don’t even know what the Liberty is, but I’ll take your word for it

    • eventhorizon04 - May 4, 2013 at 2:54 PM

      NY’s WNBA team.

      • mazblast - May 4, 2013 at 3:47 PM

        WNBA? Is that bunch of mares still around?

  4. badintent - May 4, 2013 at 4:23 PM

    If you think da bulls are tough, just trying playing ball in Brooklyn Fort Greene housing projects. More guns than a NRA convention.
    Herr Stern will flip a coin to pick his choice of a major market for his TV commerical sponsors.Watch the refs in crunch times.

    • eboneseagles - May 4, 2013 at 5:24 PM

      I’d rather not try that.

      • jimeejohnson - May 4, 2013 at 7:42 PM

        From your comments it sounds like you should.

  5. slinging16 - May 4, 2013 at 5:04 PM

    eboneseagles great argument. You have a future in debate my friend. You can’t sense the little guy syndrome at all.

  6. mindblather - May 4, 2013 at 5:18 PM

    Don’t know why PBT has started adding the Profile picture box to the side of the comments. It’s distracting and I wish they would remove it.

  7. sledgehorn - May 4, 2013 at 5:26 PM

    Out of curiosity, is it possible that Derrick Rose could come trotting out on to the floor tonight?

    I know logistically, and physically that would be miraculous, but is something actually preventing him like a clause or contract?

    • Kurt Helin - May 5, 2013 at 1:49 PM

      He can return whenever, however it would have to be announced in advance because he has to be formally put in the lineup.

  8. 1972wasalongtimeago - May 4, 2013 at 8:54 PM

    I’m typing this in the middle of 2nd Q. It’s 42-38 Chi. Don’t know how it’s going to end. But I can tell you this. The Nets are total Dog Crap.

    • 1972wasalongtimeago - May 4, 2013 at 8:57 PM

      48-38. Nets are embarrassing

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