Tom Thibodeau acknowledged after Thursday night's loss to the Heat in Miami that his team didn't respond well enough to the Heat's physical play, but that doesn't mean he thinks his Bulls are soft.
"When you look at the strength of the club, we've been a defensive team, we've been a rebounding team for a long time," Thibodeau said. "We've been a dominant rebounding team. You can't be a dominant rebounding team being soft, I know that. I wouldn't say we're soft. Were we disappointed with the end result in Miami? Yeah. Are we capable of playing a lot better? Yeah. We're disappointed with our fourth quarter but we also did a lot of good things in that game. That was a winnable game in the fourth quarter. We're going to make some corrections and move forward."
John Lucas III got flattened by LeBron James on a screen and pushed when he tried to approach James afterwards. It was just one of several incidents in a game littered with flagrant fouls and double technicals that will set the stage for what could be another memorable Eastern Conference Final if both teams avoid upsets.
"If they want to get physical we can get physical right back," Lucas III said. "If that's the type of game they want than that's the type of game we're going to bring. That's our mentality. That's not something we need to work on."