Bulls

Why not the Bears?

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Why not the Bears?

If you really do want Lovie Smith to lose his job, then you really dont want the Bears to reach the playoffs. Because if they do, Smith might not be leaving anytime soon. (Even if they dont, that may be the case as well.)
 
The reason lies in the realm of the possible, because once a team is in the playoffs, the clich of anything is possible is indeed the case. In fact, the unusual arguably becomes the norm.
 
For critics who argue that the Bears do not remotely deserve to be in the postseason, consider:
 
Three of the last five Super Bowl champions were 10-6 or 9-7 in their regular seasons (2011 and 2007 New York Giants and 2010 Green Bay Packers) and had no business being in the playoffs.
 
How they came to that end is the real point. The Giants last year beat the 15-1 Packers in Green Bay and the 13-3 49ers in San Francisco to reach the Super Bowl.
 
The 2010 Packers defeated the 13-3 Falcons in Atlanta before coming through Chicago. The Bears reached the NFC Championship game by getting by the Seattle Seahawks, the 7-9 champion of the NFC West that had no business in the playoffs, as their win over defending Super Bowl champion New Orleans the round previous certainly showed, right?
 
And the other recent wild-card Super Bowl winner was the 2007 Giants, who beat the 13-3 Packers in Green Bay in the NFC Championship game, then finished off the trophy win by downing the New England Patriots, who had come into their Super Bowl 18-0.
 
A number of Bears during training camp voiced a team sentiment, Why not us? It is one that they rightly can still be invoking.
 
And the winner is
 
The Bears were going to come out of Game 16 in Detroit with the NFC North title in hand and being 11-5. The division crown and the record were lost in the 1-5 games stretch from Houston to Green Bay but the Bears simply need to get past one of the true whole-season flop stories in Detroit and they will have their 10-win season and the playoffs, with a little help from Green Bay.
 
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Bobby Portis punches Nikola Mirotic, breaking bones in Mirotic's face

Bobby Portis punches Nikola Mirotic, breaking bones in Mirotic's face

Bobby Portis and Nikola Mirotic were involved in an altercation that resulted in Mirotic suffering two broken bones in his face after Portis punched him, according to sources.

Mirotic, who’s out indefinitely, was evaluated for a concussion and taken to a hospital, where he was released but was apparently a bit out of it, according to a source. The altercation began with pushing and shoving between the two before Mirotic lunged forward at Portis and Portis hit Mirotic, sending him to the floor.

“I’ve seen worse,” a witness said.

Mirotic was taken to the training room and Portis went to the other side of the floor.

Apparently the two have had testy moments since Portis entered the league in 2015. The two play the same position and have battled for minutes, with Portis often getting the short end in the rotation.

Where this leaves Portis with the Bulls for the immediate future as far as a suspension is unknown.

But what was supposed to be a so-called nondescript season has suddenly put the spotlight on the players and the coaching staff, who’ll have to navigate the relationship between the two teammates.

Bobby Portis breaks bones in Nikola Mirotic's face after practice altercation

Bobby Portis breaks bones in Nikola Mirotic's face after practice altercation

Last year's Bulls team was mediocre in the standings, but had plenty of in-season drama. This year's group is off to a similar start.

The Vertical's Shams Charania first reported that Nikolic Mirotic and Bobby Portis got in an altercation at practice and Mirotic was taken to the hospital as a result. The two were apparently in a shoving match until Portis hit Mirotic in the face.

The Bulls confirmed the incident in a statement.

"Chicago Bulls forwards Bobby Portis and Nikola Mirotic had a physical altercation during today's practice," the team statement read. "As a result of the incident, Mirotic suffered a concussion and maxillary fractures. Surgery is likely required. Mirotic is out indefinitely.

"The Bulls are evaluating disciplinary action. An update will be provided when applicable."

Mirotic is listed at 6-foot-10, 238 pounds and Portis is 6-11, 246, so any fight between those two could cause some serious damage.

The Chicago Tribune's K.C. Johnson reported that Mirotic has headed home and has not one, but two broken bones in his face.