Dream NBA Finals 2015: Bulls vs Thunder
The 2014 NBA Finals is a rematch between the Miami Heat and the San Antonio Spurs. In 2013 the two teams had a thrilling seven game series that Miami won. The chances of these teams meeting again for a third time in a row is unlikely, so the best matchup for next year’s NBA Finals will be Oklahoma City Thunder vs Chicago Bulls. The matchup is intriguing on so many levels, and fans will turn into seeing these two teams.The only way that this NBA Finals matchup even happens is if the Bulls acquire Carmelo Anthony this offseason and Derrick Rose plays at an MVP level.
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The matchups at each position are must see TV. Kevin Durant and Carmelo Antony are the two best scorers in the NBA today. Durant averaged 32 points a game during the regular season as he won his first MVP. He has the ability to shoot the ball from anywhere on the court. His 6-foot-10 height and his release makes it almost impossible for his shot to be blocked by an opponent. Anthony is two inches shorter, but can match Durant’s scoring on any given night. Anthony averaged 27.4 points per game this year for the Knicks. Anthony can shoot the 3-point shot, but he prefers to shot high percentage midrange shots, and he uses his body to post up smaller defenders if needed.
Neither Anthony nor Durant will guard each other much in the finals, because both teams have a superior defender that can challenge even the best scorers. Jimmy Butler will have to guard Durant most of the series. In his short amount of time in the NBA, Butler has gained a reputation as being a premier defender. He has the ability to play as long as possible to disrupt the offensive flow.
On the other side of the ball, former Bull Thabo Sefolosha will guard Anthony. Selfolosha has a 7-foot-2 wingspan that makes it difficult to drive to the lane against him. He will be entering his ninth year in the league, and in those previous year he has learned techniques that will frustrate Anthony for a seven game series.
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The two most explosive guards in the NBA will square off in one of the best matchups in history. Derrick Rose and Russell Westbrook can do things on the court that no other point guards in the history of the game can do. They attack the rim without fear, and run fast breaks perfectly. Unlike Durant and Anthony, these two player would spend the majority of the time guarding each other the entire series.
Westbrook is very competitive and often attacks the player that recently scored on him. In most games Westbrook’s pure speed is enough to go right past a defender, and get either to the rim or his spot on the court for a shot. However Rose is Westbrook’s equal athletically, and that will force Westbrook to play smarter against the Bulls. If Westbrook tries to blow by Rose every time down the court the Thunder will suffer because the Bulls are a great rebounding team.
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The paint will see two of the best post defenders go against each other. Serge Ibaka and Joakim Noah will go make life hard for each other in the post. The two gritty defenders fight for every rebound and loose ball. Ibaka blocks more shots than Noah, but Noah has the advantage of better defensive technique. The Bulls have an advantage in this matchup if you add Taj Gibson into the paint to help Noah battle Ibaka.
The Thunder do have a big body in Kendrick Perkins, but he will not contribute that well because Noah and Gibson are not traditional big men. Perkins can guard centers and power forwards that operate with their backs to the basket. Perkins can use his strength to force those players out of the post. Noah and Gibson face up to the basket more, and use their quickness to get good position against opponents.
The Bulls and Thunder will have one of the best NBA Finals in recent history. The Thunder does have more playoff experience than the Bulls, but the advantage in the paint will be too much for the Thunder to overcome. The Bulls will win the series in six, and will earn the franchise’s seventh NBA title.