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Chicago Bulls: Tough Matchup for Any Team in Eastern Conference Playoffs

The NBA regular season ends on Wednesday with the playoffs starting on Saturday April 19. Entering the last game of the season tonight, the Chicago Bulls sit in the No. 4 spot in the Eastern Conference playoff race.

The Bulls are 48-33 on the season and tied with the No. 3 Toronto Raptors who are also 48-33, but own the tiebreaker between the two teams.

Tonight, the Bulls visit the Charlotte Bobcats for their last regular season game. The Raptors travel to the Big Apple to face the New York Knicks, who defeated Brooklyn on Tuesday night, but will be without leading scorer Carmelo Anthony again tonight.

If Chicago wins and Toronto loses, the Bulls will end up in the No. 3 spot and start their playoffs at home against either Washington or Charlotte. If the Bulls lose, they will be the No. 4 seed and play at home against the Brooklyn Nets to open the postseason.

Regardless of where they finish No. 3 or No. 4, the Bulls will be a club no team wants to play against. This is nearly unbelievable considering what took place earlier in the season.

In November, the Bulls lost Derrick Rose their starting point guard and former MVP in the league to a season ending knee injury.

In January, the Bulls traded away All-Star forward Luol Deng who was second on the team in scoring.

The team does not have a traditional superstar in its current lineup. The Bulls have no offensive prodigy that can score 25 points or more per game regardless if he is on or not, such as LeBron James at Miami or Kevin Durant in Oklahoma City.

Offensively the Bulls rank No. 27 not far from No. 30 and the bottom of the heap in points per possession. In overall scoring per game, the Bulls are dead last at No. 30.

The Bulls leading scoring averages just 14.9 points a game. That player D.J. Augustin, was cut this past December by Toronto after being let go last July by Indiana. Every other team in the NBA has one player that averages more points per game than Augustin.

On Miami, three players are averaging more points per game than Augustin. The worst team in the NBA, the Milwaukee Bucks has two of their players averaging more points per game than Augustin.

In a game where the team with the most points wins, Chicago is indifferent when it comes to scoring points. Yet, they have outplayed two thirds of the NBA and on any given night are capable of defeating teams with healthier, deeper and more skilled rosters.

During the season, Chicago has defeated both Indiana and Miami twice. The Bulls have defeated Dallas, Golden State, Houston and San Antonio. Since the start of 2014, the Bulls are 36-15, which is the third best record in the NBA.

This is extremely rare on the Bulls part. Over the past nine seasons, teams that were No. 26 to No. 30 in offensive efficiency averaged just 27 wins per season. Only three teams in that group had winning records and those teams were between 2003 and 2005.

Defense is their game and defense matters most now that the playoffs are about to start. Will the Bulls win the East and the NBA Title? Unlikely, but they will win their share and could find themselves in the Eastern Conference finals.

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