The Chicago Bulls have advanced to the second round of the NBA playoffs and it's something not a lot of people saw coming Saturday morning. Kirk Hinrich was out with a bruised left calf and Luol Deng would miss his second straight game due to complications from a spinal tap procedure. Despite being even more short-handed then normal, head coach Tom Thibodeau said he never doubted his team's ability to win.
"Our team has the belief that we can win every night." Thibodeau said. "We've been short-handed, guys have stepped up, I thought our bench was phenomenal."
While the Bulls got sharp play from all eight players that saw court time, none looked sharper than Joakim Noah, who finished the game with 24 points, 14 rebounds and six blocked shots. After the game, Noah said he was looking for his shot a little bit more than normal.
"They were really trying to take Booze (Carlos Boozer) out of the game, daring me to shoot basically," Noah said. "I just wanted to be aggressive tonight."
Now the Bulls take on the Miami Heat with no guarantees that they'll have any more help than they did tonight. Thibodeau said Deng and Hinrich are both day-to-day while the subject of Rose's availability was not broached after the Game 7 win. Game 1 of Heat-Bulls tips off Monday night at 7 p.m. ET on TNT.