The United Center. Home of the GOAT. AKA Michael Jordan.
In the early 90s, they came to see MJ. Now they come to see the hometown kid, Dwayne Wade.
I had the chance to do what some dream about, that is see a game at the United Center. To say that a lot of my dreams came true would be an understatement. I was like a kid in the candy store eating up all of the banners hanging in the rafters, championship trophies, and watching Jimmy Butler, Rondo, and D-Wade play the Heat.
Like I said, kid in a candy store.
Watching the game from our seats was a treat and experience. During this time, I also realized why the Bulls are going to be a playoff contender in the East. The place was ROCKIN’. United Center had all of its fans on its feet and ready for the ball game. This place is one hell of an arena with an even better fan base, who are itching to get back to where they were in the 90s.
Watching how Jimmy Butler and D-Wade take possession after possession down the court and convert against a lacking Heat team it became clear to me. They have all the tools to be a playoff team and one that competes for a spot in the ECF. Obviously, there are areas that they need to improve on. One of those being the defensive end. Teams that score just as easily as you night in and night out makes it difficult to have those easy wins. Saturday, December 10th, the Heat were hanging with the Bulls the entire game. Was I complaining? No, I was there at the game and was loving every second of it from the fans point-of-view. The players knew that they should have blown that team out.
Additionally, the starters and second team need to play better a cohesive group. Adding two All-Stars in Wade and Rondo create some meshing that takes time and I think that the Bulls are starting to see how those pieces all fit together. Any person who has watched the Bulls and say that Wade has not been a HUGE influence to Butler has no insight or knowledge at all. Butler has become much more efficient and has created a low-post game that makes it very tough to guard. When Jimmy is at his best, so are the Bulls.
Lastly, it goes without saying that the biggest piece is this guy they call D-Wade. I mean c’mon, the guy does it all AND is the hometown kid. Wade has proven to all doubters that he clearly has 3+ years in him where he can play at an All-Star level. Some thought this was taken away when LeBron left Miami and he was left there on his own going through injury after injury. D-Wade is playing heavy minutes and making large impacts. He is also shooting the 3 at a exceptionally high rate for what he has shot it at in previous years. All in all, this team has all the tools to be a formidable opponent come playoff time.
I said this at the beginning of the season and I stick to it now. The Chicago Bulls WILL be a playoff team in the East. Yes, they have lost some they shouldn’t have (I.E. blowing a 20-point lead against the T-Wolves), but they will hit a run this year in the East that will catapult them into the top 4 in the East. Anyone who has two big time guards like Wade and Butler, along with the dishing ability of Rondo, watch out folks.
Chicago is making a comeback.