Nov 11, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah (13) talks with point guard Derrick Rose (1) during the second half against the Cleveland Cavaliers at the United Center. The Bulls won 96-81. Mandatory Credit: Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports

Will the Chicago Bulls win the Eastern Conference?

Back in 2011, the Chicago Bulls were one of the most promising teams in basketball. Point guard Derrick Rose was fresh of winning the MVP and the Bulls reached the Eastern Conference Finals where they were defeated by the Miami Heat.

Since then, Rose has played just 49 games, including 10 in the last two seasons and the Bulls have won just one playoff series. They hoped to have improved enough in the offseason to change that. They Bulls signed Los Angeles Lakers’ big man Pau Gasol to a three-year, $22 million deal and nailed down a deal to bring Real Madrid forward Nikola Mirotić to the NBA on a three-year, $17 million deal. They re-signed point guard Kirk Hinrich and added Denver Nuggets’ veteran point guard Aaron Brooks. They also traded the rights to their 16th and 19th-overall selections for the rights to the 11th-overall pick, former Creighton Blue Jays’ forward Doug McDermott

Alex Kennedy believes the Bulls “have a shot” at winning the east.

They definitely have a shot. I think those are the two best teams in the Eastern Conference. The Bulls’ frontcourt has the potential to be very, very good and Chicago can do a lot of interesting things with Noah and Gasol playing together since they are both so skilled and excellent at passing. Rose’s return is really the big question mark. With Rose playing at a star level, this team is arguably the favorite to come out of the East, given Cleveland’s inexperience. Without Rose, this team isn’t as scary.

The Bulls obviously have a fantastic chance to get to the NBA Finals – the Eastern Conference is more talented all-around but with LeBron James leaving the Miami Heat for the Cleveland Cavaliers, there is no clear favorite.

Tags: Chicago Bulls Derrick Rose Joakim Noah Pau Gasol

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