Health. The biggest question Chicago Bulls fans have been asking themselves for the past few seasons is: can the Bulls stay healthy throughout the season to make a strong title contention? When Derrick Rose tore his ACL in 2012, his playoff streak was over, losing in the first round to the Philadelphia 76ers. Rose missed the entire 2012-2013 season and when he returned the following season, he tore his meniscus in the first 15 games and crushed the Chicago fans’ chances of taking the title. The 2014-2015 season seemed like the year until Derrick was injured for the third time. He came back for the playoffs only to fall short against Lebron and the Cavaliers in 6 games.
• If the Chicago Bulls are to have any chance of winning a championship this year, Derrick Rose must stay healthy and return to his MVP level in 2011.
• Each player’s minutes must be preserved throughout the season so that each player is healthy when it comes time for the playoffs. No player should average 40 minutes per game.
New coach transition. After head coach Tom Thibodeau was fired from his job, Fred Hoiberg, the former men’s basketball head coach at Iowa State, will take over. The last few years under Thibodeau have given the roster a defensive mindset, but Hoiberg will focus on offense.
• Coach Hoiberg plays at a fast pace that will complement Derrick Rose and Jimmy Butler’s style of play to attack the basket.
• Attacking the basket will spread the court wide open for 3-point shooters like Dunleavy, Mirotic and McDermott.
• Golden State Warriors rookie coach Steve Kerr proved last year that it’s possible to win a championship without coaching experience.
Depth. The strongest argument that makes the Chicago Bulls a championship contender is the amount of depth they have on their roster. With four stars on the team and a bench made up of early quality players, anyone is capable of making a huge impact on the game.
• In 2011, the Bulls reached the Eastern Conference Finals relying almost entirely on Derrick Rose. However, with the current Bulls roster, Rose no longer has to do it all. Jimmy Butler had his best season last year and signed a max contract with the Bulls. Gasol has shown the offensive threat that he is. Nikola Mirotic arrived from Spain last year and has shown that when he has minutes he does exceptionally well. And there are plenty of other players the Bulls have who can turn on their offense instantly.
• In 2011, the Bulls’ announcer nicknamed his bench “the bench mob.” Though Gibson and Butler are the only former bench mob players still on the Bulls’ roster, the Bulls’ bench has only gotten better, including Mirotic and McDermott.
If the Bulls roster stays healthy, the players can easily transition to new head coach Fred Hoiberg’s offense, and they use arguably the best bench in the league, the Bulls will have no trouble beating Lebron’s Cavaliers. James and face his opponent in the NBA Finals. Whether it’s the Golden State Warriors or the San Antonia Spurs, the Bulls will return the trophy to its rightful home in Chicago to accompany the titles that Michael Jordan brought to the city all those years ago.