3. Milwaukee Bucks (50-19)
Unlike the other teams on this list, we don’t have to imagine how a playoff series against the Milwaukee Bucks would play out. Of course, that’s because we saw that happen just last year, as the Bulls were thoroughly embarrassed in five games and sent home packing.
If not for DeMar DeRozan’s heroics in game two, it would have easily been a series sweep. DeMar posted a jaw-dropping 41 points on 51.6% shooting from the field that day, and still only managed to eke out a 114-110 victory. Just like the aforementioned Embiid, Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo is simply too dominant in the low post for the Bulls to employ a reasonable counter-play.
That much is especially true when you consider the fact the Bulls have made no improvements over the last year outside of, well… adding Andre Drummond? Meanwhile, Milwaukee has arguably only gotten better as the additions of Jae Crowder and Joe Ingles have made the Bucks a far more versatile team on both ends of the court. Brook Lopez is also a worthy candidate for the Defensive Player of the Year award and would force a team that hates to shoot threes to play a perimeter-oriented game.
I rank the Bucks ahead of the 76ers here, but they may as well both be death sentences for the Bulls. The NBA is ruled by MVP-caliber players, and Chicago would be hard-pressed to overcome either Giannis or Embiid if they emerge victorious in the play-in tournament.