May 15, 2013; Miami, FL, USA; Chicago Bulls small forward Jimmy Butler (21) is pressured by Miami Heat small forward LeBron James (6) during the second half in game five of the second round of the 2013 NBA Playoffs at American Airlines Arena. Miami Heat won 94-91. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Miami Heat vs Chicago Bulls: What to watch for


Guys, there’s NBA basketball tonight! And it counts!

The season opener (that we actually care about) is between two of the top-3 players in the NBA, maybe. Derrick Rose vs LeBron James. Can’t get any better than that. But apart from the storyline’s and the drama it will bring, it will also begin to bring answers to some of our pre-season questions.

Here are a few things that we should keep an eye on as the Bulls and Heat clash tonight…


Derrick Rose’s shooting 

Rose put up insane shooting numbers this preseason (12-27 3pt), it’s going to be interesting to see if he can translate that to the regular season. If he has a consistent jumper, it’s over. 


Does Dwyane Wade look healthy?

The fate of the Miami Heat’s season could very well lay in the hands, or knees, of Dwyane Wade. His health will be so critical for the Heat. LeBron James is going to need his running-mate if the Heat are going to have a chance to make it out of the top-heavy East.


Will Greg Oden get any PT?

The Miami Heat don’t want any of us to really know what’s going on with Greg Oden. They don’t want us to know if he’s healthy and/or how healthy. We saw that when they surprisingly played him in his preseason debut, then a few days later Oden talked about how he’s ready if the Heat need him. Hmm… is Oden closer to play than Andrew Bynum? We’ll find out soon enough. 


What about Michael Beasley?

I think Beasley could become a super sixth man for the Miami Heat this season. It may not come right away but sooner or later, he’s going to earn a role. I think we’ll find out right away if he’ll carry one initially. I don’t think so but we’ll see. 


How does Jimmy Butler look?

Jimmy Butler surprised a lot of people with his play last season, which came a little forcefully with the absence of Derrick Rose. Though, at the end of the day the Bulls ended up benefiting from it. Have the Bulls finally solved the dilemma that was their shooting guard position, or lack thereof of one? 


Can the Bulls really contend with Miami?

I know it’s just one game, but it’s a real important one. The Miami Heat is the Gold Standard in the NBA right now (just look at their jerseys) and we want to know where the Bulls stand with Rose. A win could very well send a message to the rest of the league. 


Tags: Chicago Bulls Derrick Rose Dwyane Wade Greg Oden Jimmy Butler Miami Heat Michael Beasley NBA NBA Offseason

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