Heat/Mavericks: Who to root for?

OK, this may be easy to answer for Bulls fans. Actually, any fan outside the state of Florida.

When LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh joined together in Miami, they became the most vilified team in the NBA in a blink of an eye. By default, most will be rooting for the Dallas Mavericks in the NBA Finals. 

But who will Bulls fans be rooting for?

The Heat winning the NBA title would hurt the Bulls' chances for the future more than anything. On one end, the Bulls could say they lost this season to the eventual champion -- in the Eastern Conference finals -- but if the Heat do win it all, that's a dynasty waiting to happen.

Once you get the first title, confidence rises, hunger (for some teams) rises. It'd be scary to imagine this Heat team winning an NBA title in Year One of their James/Wade/Bosh era. We knew they'd compete, but to win an NBA title Year One in the process could be a sickening sight for the league.

LeBron James.jpg

LeBron with a title? That's not a sight that Bulls fans want to see.

Especially for the Bulls, who will improve in their own right. But if the Heat can prove they can win an NBA title with three stars and a cast of lower-level players, what does that say?

It says the Bulls aren't close to their level. Not even near them.

We know it was a close series, though one that lasted five games. The Bulls had chances. But it's about wins and losses. Being "close" doesn't cut it.

Most of Bulls nation may simply watch just to see if the Heat can close the deal. Or, better yet, lose in the Finals.

The Mavericks, representing the West, have put together quite the postseason. They beat the Portland Trail Blazers in six, L.A. Lakers in four and the OKC Thunder in five. They've gone under the radar all season, and it's hard not to root for a team with a humble, quiet assassin as the superstar, Dirk Nowitzki.

Hey, that reminds me of another humble, quiet assassin ... (Derrick Rose).

Some of Bulls nation may not even care for these Finals, though. Probably still bummed out on the loss to the Heat.

But don't be. These NBA Finals -- even without the Bulls -- will be a gem. You have a quiet, veteran-laden team in the Mavericks, who are on their last legs and likely their best chance at winning an NBA title. Then, you have a pompous, self-proclaimed "Heatles".

Said Joakim Noah: "They are Hollywood as hell, but they are very good."

Indeed, they are both. And that's why many will be rooting for the Mavericks to send the Heat fishing ringless.

Chicagoans will take it. It would leave LeBron ringless, the Heat with as many titles as the Bulls this season (zero) and extinguish a potential dynasty-in-the-making.

Because if the Heat win it all this season, with James, Wade, Bosh and a bunch of lower-level pieces, imagine how much confidence they'll have going into next season, the season after that. So on and so forth.

The question: How devastating would a Heat title be?

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