Going into this series, most people expected a slugfest. The Heat with their Big Three and the Bulls with MVP Derrick Rose and crew. Well, it didn't exactly pan out that way. The Heat turned it on after the blunder that was Game One and became the team most thought they would be this year.
I, for one, thought the Bulls would win this series because of their advantages in rebounding, defense and their bench. But, Miami showed that they were tough enough to rebound, more physical on defense and with SF Mike Miller and PF Udonis Haslem, the Heat evened out the advantage the Bulls thought they had on the bench.
For the Bulls, no one can say they saw this remarkable season coming. Behind the spectacular play of MVP Derrick Rose, the Bulls charged out to the best record in the NBA and they looked to be flying high heading into the playoffs. But, as the playoffs went on, the Bulls and their major flaw was exposed. The Bulls are in need of another playmaker. Derrick Rose is indeed a difference-maker, but he can't carry the team on his back all the time. He needs someone to shoulder the burden for him at times. I would look for the Bulls to go after a play-making guard to pair with D Rose and make them even better. The Bulls are just getting started on their ascent back to the top.
For Miami, they were the team that everyone picked to win the title as soon as Lebron James announced he was going to Miami on "The Decision". As soon as he did that, the bullseye was squarely on them. The Heat looked to not be able to take the pressure at the beginning of the year as they stumbled to a 9-8 record to start the season. Some doubted if the Heat would ever get it together in time. Well, not only did they get it together, they are now where everyone thought they would be, the NBA Finals. The biggest difference is this team has been LeBron James. He was been a cold-blooded assassin in the playoffs as he has hit big shot after big shot. James has often been criticized over his career for not coming through in the clutch, but now what do you say about him? He's been Mr. Reliable in the fourth quarter. I believe the biggest thing that has changed about him since he went to Miami is his mental toughness. He seems more driven, determined and focused to me and its translating to his play on the court. But with all that being said, their mission isn't over. When this team was assembled, they were assembled to win championships. I salute them for their victory over the Bulls and making it to the NBA Finals, but there's still one more round to go.
Looking forward, I expect a good series between the Heat and the Mavericks. The game should be physical and excitement should be everywhere as Dirk tries to avenge the Mavericks' 2006 loss in the NBA Finals to the Miami Heat.