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Miami Heat Schedule: Five Intriguing Games To Watch

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January 25th, @ Chicago Bulls:

You know Bulls fans must love the idea of the Heat being a wounded animal, which allows them a chance to regain bragging rights.

The Heat’s only trip to Chicago will be a homecoming of sorts for new forward Luol Deng. Although he did return to the Windy City as a member of the Cavs, Bulls fans probably felt sorry for him having been forced to suffer through life in Cleveland. Now that he returns as a member of the team that Bulls fans have despised for the last four years, Deng may not get greeted with a welcome home.

A layer of intrigue has been added to the Heat/Bulls rivalry, as Deng took a lesser deal with the Heat (2 years, $20 million) that the Bulls had offered in 2013 (3 years, $30 million) that their fans might feel a bit betrayed. Mix that with Dwyane Wade’s return to his hometown, and this game will still be an interesting matchup.

Not to be lost in Deng’s return is that it could be argued that Chicago is the favorite in the Eastern Conference, as they add Pau Gasol to a team that includes Joakim Noah, Taj Gibson, and Jimmy Butler. Derrick Rose looks to return to MVP form as he missed the better part of two years with knee injuries. Rose’s health is paramount to the Bulls chances of winning the East. By the time of this game, we should have a better understanding of how both these teams stack up in the conference, as they jockey for position in the new look East.

Heat coach Erik Spoelstra and Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau always bring out the best of their players in these games, so no matter what names are on the back of the jerseys, the words on the front of them assures that a battle between these two teams will be an intense affair.

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