(The Spread) - The Chicago Bulls broke the series split against the Atlanta Hawks with a 95-83 victory in Game 5 on Tuesday night, sending the series back to Atlanta with a 3-2 lead. Now the Bulls look to close things out in Hotlanta, and move on to the next round.
Derrick Rose, the NBA’s 2010-11 regular season MVP, led the Bulls with 33 points in Game 5. Knowing how important it was to take that pivotal game and swing momentum back Chicago’s way, it was one of those performances that lift his status among the current greats in the NBA.
Rose is averaging 32 points-per-game in the series, proving why he’s the NBA’s youngest MVP, and he’s hoping to carry that onto a NBA Finals MVP Award.
Of course, Atlanta didn’t make things easy on Chicago. The Bulls trailed early in the fourth quarter when Rose and Taj Gibson combined for 22 of the team’s 26 points to eventually pull ahead and seize victory.
The Bulls are still looking for their first NBA championship in the post-Michael Jordan era, while the Hawks are looking for their first championship period since relocating from St. Louis.
Oddsmakers from online sports book Bodog.com currently list the Bulls with 7/2 odds to win the NBA championship, while the Hawks are 100/1 long shots. That said, if Atlanta can mount a victory in Thursday’s Game 6, those odds could change dramatically.
Can Joe Johnson, Jeff Teague, Al Horford and the Hawks rise above the overwhelming odds? Or will Derrick Rose and Co. move to their first Eastern Conference Final since they won it all in 1998?