During Monday’s practice, the Miami Heat coaching staff geared up in football pads and nearly attacked the Big 3 to get them prepared for the anxious and physical Chicago Bulls team they will see in Tuesday’s season opener. This game has about as many story lines and you want and ask for, considering it’s game 1 of 82.
In one corner we have LeBron James and the Heat. The superstar trio weighed in on their approach and feeling about facing the Bulls on opening night. James told the media on Monday, “We don’t like them, they don’t like us. It’s not unheard of. We all know how it is.” Dwyane Wade added, “They want to beat us just as bad as we want to beat them.” Finally Chris Bosh said, “They want to spoil what we have going and we’re aware of that. We have to hit first.”
Seeing as the Heat have eliminated the Bulls in the playoffs two of the last three years countered by the Bulls overzealous celebration after ending the Heat’s 28-game winning streak, I would say the above is true and then some. The Heat also get their Championship rings and hang another Championship banner in the rafters on Tuesday. LeBron has made it clear during the summer that he has once again gotten better. With the Bulls ready to charge, will Miami counter the blow?
In the other corner, stands an anxious and driven Derrick Rose and his Chicago Bulls. The Bulls defense was already a lot for Miami to handle when they were a team of just a crippled few. Now, the Bulls are more healthy then they’ve been in a little over a year and they made it clear that the Heat have something that they want. In a sit down with Micheal Wilbon, Rose said that he was a jealous person when it comes to basketball and that his goal was not more MVP’s, but titles. Loul Deng and Kirk Henrich are back in the lineup and Joakim Noah declared that he is 100 percent for opening night. This team is more than motivated to ruin any joy Miami might get out of this night.
Tom Thibodeau told the press that the Bulls will not be out on the floor during the ring ceremony but rather in the locker room. Rose added, “That’s their ceremony, not ours.” The Heat will be the center of attention to start, but who’s show will it be after 48 minutes? The game airs at 8:00 ET on TNT.