Derrick Rose wants to play the Heat, and wants to play them now.
The regular-season MVP stressed the importance of closing out the Eastern Conference Semi-finals against the Hawks tonight in Game Six at Philips Arena.
This is the biggest game of our life right here, said Rose, according to ESPN. That's the way we have to go into it, where this is our championship game. It's important to us. We're going to try our hardest just to go out here and just try to seal the deal.
The Bulls are up 3-2 in the best-of-seven series, but with Miami having already beaten the Boston Celtics, Chicago wants to avoid giving the Heat more rest going into the Eastern Conference Finals.
The Hawks have other plans. Atlanta is surprising many critics who didn't expect them to get by the Orlando Magic.
Not only has Larry Drew's squad overachieved by making it to the Eastern Conference Semi-finals, the Hawks are giving the number-one seed Bulls a very competitive series.
The Hawks have been doing it without starting point guard Kirk Hinrich, who the club needed to contain Rose. It was a major loss for the Hawks, who were heavy underdogs, and considering how important Rose is to Chicago.
With Hinrich out, Drew has had to rely on Jeff Teague, who has exceeded expectations.
In fact, Teague might be the main reason that Atlanta has come this far.
In five games against the Bulls, Teague has played an average of 41.4 minutes per game, and has scoring at will. He's averaged 17 points per game, and has shot nearly 56 percent from the field, and better than 84 percent from the free-throw line.
Teague had seven assists and no turnovers in Game Five. In fact, he only has five turnovers in the entire series, which is excellent for a point guard who has played as many minutes as Teague has.
The Hawks will need other players to step up, like Al Horford and Marvin Williams, as the Bulls will probably follow Rose's lead and give a hard-nosed effort to finish off Atlanta on the road.
The Bulls have great depth, so a long series gives them an advantage over their opponents.