CHICAGO – How is it that a team defined by its lack of definition can be so good when the spotlight shines the brightest?
Maybe that’s the point. It doesn’t make sense, just like the team at many points during this season.
But for whatever reason, the Bulls turn it on whenever there are three simple letters associated with their game – TNT.
On Thursday the Bulls knocked off the defending NBA Champion Cleveland Cavaliers at the United Center 99-93 to extend their winning streak on the network in regular season home games to 20.
Impressive, right? Especially for a team that has struggled to be consistent at anything over the past two years.
But this streak goes farther back than that – all the way to February 28, 2013. On that night the Bulls beat the Sixers 92-83 while playing on TNT at home in the regular season and haven’t lost since.
These victories weren’t over slouches either. In 2013 the Bulls knocked off the eventual Eastern Conference champion Heat by 20 points in December of that season. In the 2015 calendar year, the Bulls beat James’ Cavalier twice and the Spurs once. San Antonio was a victim of the #TNTBulls in 2016 along with the Celtics (Twice), Clippers, and Thunders – all playoffs teams in that season.
2017 has arguably been the most impressive with wins over the Warriors, Celtics and Cavaliers – the first, fourth and fifth teams in the NBA. Thursday’s win over Cleveland completes the Bulls’ sweep of the season series against the Cavaliers, a mind-boggling feat considering the Bulls’ rampant inconsistency this season.
Unfortunately for the Bulls, who are still in a fight for a playoff spot, they are done with home games on TNT for the regular season. At least this can be a positive storyline for next season, which at the moment is as much of an unknown as the reasons for this remarkable winning streak.