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 EST
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.
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.
“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.”
Mar 6, 2015, 4:50 PM EST
It’s starting to feel like the playoffs are coming, play is getting chippy.
Mar 6, 2015, 4:02 PM EST
It was worth a shot.
Mar 6, 2015, 3:12 PM EST
It would be a long road back for White, but there is a road.
Mar 6, 2015, 2:37 PM EST
Raptors need their All-Star point guard to get on track
Mar 6, 2015, 1:38 PM EST
Pacers great tells fantastic tale of trash-talking gone awry
Mar 6, 2015, 12:54 PM EST
Do the Lakers have a chance?
Blindfolded attempt in Philippines Basketball Association dunk contest goes very, very poorly (video)
Mar 6, 2015, 12:16 PM EST
Mar 6, 2015, 11:39 AM EST
Orlando should do better
Mar 6, 2015, 10:34 AM EST
Portland can overcome loss of shooting guard, but it won’t be easy
Mar 6, 2015, 9:43 AM EST
It was a big win, but still
Mar 6, 2015, 9:07 AM EST
Former Celtics star continues what he began Wilkins’ rookie year
Mar 6, 2015, 8:30 AM EST
He said his Achilles has been bothering him.
Mar 6, 2015, 8:00 AM EST
The form wasn’t pretty but the result was.
Mar 6, 2015, 3:10 AM EST
Westbrook is still a machine
Mar 6, 2015, 12:53 AM EST
This hurts the Blazers guard depth.
LeBron James after receiving two flagrant fouls in his last three games: ‘Maybe I got to protect myself a little bit more’
Mar 6, 2015, 12:00 AM EST
James hints at retaliation.
Mar 5, 2015, 11:00 PM EST
Pacers’ David West made the assertion after Denver fired head coach Brian Shaw.
Mar 5, 2015, 10:00 PM EST
Ibaka comes up with a massive rejection.
Mar 5, 2015, 9:00 PM EST
Gasol is too skilled.
Mar 5, 2015, 8:00 PM EST
We all saw it at the time, but the league confirmed the missed call the next day.
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