There were many good games on this afternoon, but this column isn’t GOTA(fternoon) so tonight’s games will have to do.
I’d like to title this game, the We thought these teams would be better game. Every NBA preview of this season had the Cavs and Bulls squaring off in the Eastern Conference finals, and I’d bet they probably still will meet then if the seeding works out. Both teams will make the playoffs but at this point both are outside of the top 3 in a bad Eastern Conference. Each team has had ups and downs and are looking for consistency and W’s.
Let’s start out with the bad. The Cavs (6th seed) haven’t looked like a team all year, a mixed bag of good parts aka Kyrie, Love, and Labron, that haven’t fit together as a unit. Much like when Labron went to Miami, each player is a ball-dominant guy so personalities are going to be have to put aside for this team to really contend. The Bulls sit 4th in the East and haven’t been able to keep Noah healthy who will be out with an ankle injury. He was the lynchpin in last years team without Rose and his defense and passing are vital to the title hopes of this team. Rose has been sidelined often but when he’s out there he looks good.
The good. Butler is a beast and has had his breakout year much like paul george did a few years back. Butler vs. James should be fun to watch tonight. Another fun matchup will be Gasol vs. Love. Gasol has really found his place in this Bulls team as an inside scoring option they desperately needed. The good for the Cavs has been the games since Labron has come back from injury. James has looked like the MVP we remember in his ability to make his teammates better. With no Noah inside this could be a high scoring, fun game.
My prediction: Cavs 100 Bulls 95