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Game Preview: Heat face Bulls with both teams needing victories

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Derrick Rose returned last night for Chicago and will likely play tonight. Both the Heat and Bulls need victories to try to get to the playoff positioning they want.

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David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

The Chicago Bulls welcomed back Derrick Rose last night, but they lost in the last seconds to the Orlando Magic as Victor Oladpio scored. The Bulls are in danger of losing the 3rd seed in the East to the Toronto Raptors. The Heat beat the Charlotte Hornets on Tuesday night, but they are on the outside looking in. Although things can change quickly, both these teams need a victory.

Miami is going to have to hope that Hassan Whiteside is up for another big game against Joakim Noah and Pau Gasol, Chicago's two bigs. The Heat and Bulls have split two meeting this year, and the last one saw Whiteside get a triple double with blocks. The feeling around the Heat practice was that everybody would be available except for the 3 players out for the year -- Chris Bosh, Josh McRoberts, and Shabazz Napier.

The Bulls are the third best rebounding team in the NBA, so the Heat will have to be very careful on boxing out and taking care of the glass as best they can. Miami has to hope Luol Deng and Dwyane Wade can do a solid job on Jimmy Butler, the Bulls' leading scorer. They'll also need Wade to be good.

For more on the Bulls, visit: Blog a Bull

But probably the most important need for the Heat is that Goran Dragic plays like he did on Tuesday, when he scored 28 points. Dragic is the motor that can keep the Heat in games if they follow his lead. With Rose playing on a back-toback, Dragic should be looking to push the pace against Chicago.

Here's the probable starters for tonight:

Probable Starters
Derrick Rose PG Goran Dragic
Jimmy Butler SG Dwyane Wade
Mike Dunleavy SF Luol Deng
Pau Gasol PF Udonis Haslem
Joakim Noffffah C Hassan Whiteside

Here's the details about the game:

Bulls (46-32) @ Heat (35-43)
When: 8:00 PM EST @ AmericanAirlines Arena
TV: SunSports, TNT // Radio: 790 the Ticket

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