Joakim Noah is certainly not a player that Celtics fans have grown to love. In fact, it's quite the opposite. But as much as they may hate him, he hates the Celtics more.
After losing to the Celtics 95-91 on Sunday, bank on Noah and the Bulls to be ready for revenge in Chicago tonight.
When I walked into the locker room on Sunday, I wasn't surprised to see him as one of the only players left - just sitting in front of his locker staring off as a reporter talked his ear off in French.
"Can I see that box score?" he asked me.
I handed it to him and watched as he looked it over, shaking his head in disgust.
"We shot 38-percent tonight, that sucks," he said.
But doing against the Celtics makes it exponentially worse for Noah.
"Yeah no question I hate losing to the Celtics," Noah said. "I don't know. I'm from New York so I kind of grew up hating the Celtics too."
"It's that green... I don't know. I just don't like that color," he said.
The Celtics and Bulls have had numerous battles since the new Big Three era (2007-8) with the Celtics owning an 11-6 head-to-head record over the Bulls in the regular season since then. And who can forget that memorable seven-game playoff series a few years back that the C's squeaked out?
It all boils in Noah's blood.
"I'm a competitor, they compete very hard. They have a lot of experience together and I just hate losing to them," he said.
While Noah is certainly not a fan of Kevin Garnett, and rarely has anything nice to say about him, he did admit that Garnett can still do many things even if he might have lost a step or two.
"I think KG was never a player who based his game on athleticism, even though he was always pretty athletic," Noah said. "It's just the way he affects the game defensively, he's still got that. Also, the way he spreads the floor with his shooting ability. He's still a great - he's still a competitor. I don't know. I don't want to give him too much credit."
And as far as the Celtics go as a team, count Noah on the side that still thinks they can be very dangerous when it really counts.
"I think they're definitely a team that's hard to take out in the playoffs just due to their experience and they're still talented as hell. So yeah they're still tough."