With a 99-93 victory over the Brooklyn Nets, the Chicago Bulls advance to the semifinals of the eastern conference where they will face MVP LeBron James and the Miami Heat. The injured, ill, and counted-out Bulls showed warrior like mentality and battled the Nets in the final game of the series.

This is the first game seven victory in Bulls franchise history.

All-Star Jakim Noah led the Bulls with 24 points and 14 rebounds, followed by Marco Belinelli who had 24 points and 6 rebounds. With an additional 17 points from Carlos Boozer and 12 points from Nate Robinson the Bulls were able to sustain a sizable lead over the Nets throughout the game without Luol Deng, Kirk Henrich, and Derrick Rose.

“I’m just so proud of this team,” said Jakim Noah. “ We’ve been fighting through so much all year and to be in this situation, play on the biggest stage in the world and to be able to win and now play against the Heat, all these experiences, I [don’t] take those for granted.”

The defending champs have been waiting for the winner of the Bulls-Nets series since April 28th when they swept the Milwaukee Bucks, giving them a week of rest before the semifinals. As the Heat continues to rest, the banged up Bulls face a shorter turn which may be a disadvantage.

“They’re very good,” Noah said of the Heat following Saturday’s game against the Nets. “But we’re going to keep fighting. Obviously they’re the best and you want to play against the best. This is what it’s all about, playing against the defending champs. It’s going to be a war.”

The second round war between the Bulls and the Heat is a conversation not worth discussing unless Derrick Rose is mentioned.

Will the semifinals mark Derrick Rose’s return?

Rose has been cleared to play since early March but continues to state that he isn’t ready to return, even after months of full-contact practice. The semifinals could be the opportunity he’s waiting for.

The Heat-Bulls series begins Monday, May 6th. The Heat have home court advantage throughout the playoffs.