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Xmas countdown: Sizing up the schedule

The Bulls face a rigorous 66-game schedule these next four months. Mike DiNovo/US Presswire

The Chicago Bulls will face the same kind of challenges that every other team faces this season when it comes to the schedule. It's brutal. There is a game almost every day and most days off will be spent on airplane going to another city. It is the kind of 66-game sprint that no coach or player wants to deal with. Having said that, the Bulls are confident they can handle the extra pressure; they may very well have the deepest team in the league. With that in mind, let's take a quick look at the Bulls' schedule and try to figure how they will fare during this shortened regular season.

December

25 @ Lakers, Win: Whether Kobe Bryant plays or not, the Lakers still won't have Andrew Bynum, who is suspended. The Bulls simply have more talent right now.

26 @Warriors, Loss: The Bulls always seem to struggle in Oakland. That won't change as they play their first back to back.

29 @Kings, Win: Who is going to stop Derrick Rose in Sacramento? Nobody.

30 @Clippers, Loss: Vinny Del Negro gets some revenge as Chris Paul and Blake Griffin have too much energy for the Bulls.

January

1 Vs. Grizzlies, Win: The Bulls make a few extra plays down the stretch in a very exciting game.

3 Vs. Hawks, Win: That Joe Johnson contract makes the Carlos Boozer deal look great.

4 @ Pistons, Win: Rip Hamilton wins his homecoming game.

6 @ Magic, Loss: Dwight Howard always gives the Bulls problems. He should still be in a Magic uniform for this one.

7 @ Hawks, Win: Noah comes out to make a point against his old college teammate Al Horford.

9 Vs. Pistons, Win: The Pistons are not very good.

10 @ Timberwolves, Win: Carlos Boozer has another big night against an up-and-coming Wolves' team.

11 Vs. Wizards: Win, The Wizards stink.

13 @ Celtics Loss. Scal gets another huge ovation. Bulls take a loss.

14 Vs. Raptors, Win: James Johnson's new hairdo is almost as bad as his new team.

16 @ Grizzlies, Loss: Memphis gets some revenge after an early-season loss.

17 Vs. Suns, Win: Steve Nash will be hoping he gets traded right around this time.

20 @ Cavs, Win: Kyrie Irving is good. Derrick Rose is a lot better.

21 Vs. Bobcats, Win: Michael Jordan wishes he could trade teams.

23 Vs. Nets, Win: Deron Williams loses to Rose again.

25 Vs. Pacers, Win: Bulls win another slugfest against Indiana.

27 Vs. Bucks, Win: Bulls win in last home game before nine-game trip starts.

29 @ Heat, Loss: James and Wade get last laugh in this one.

30 @ Wizards, Win: Flip Saunders stays in misery.

February

1 @ Sixers, Win: Bulls pick up a win in Philly, something they struggled with last year.

2 @ Knicks, Loss: The back-to-backs are starting to catch up to the Bulls.

4 @ Milwaukee, Win: Bulls are halfway through tough stretch.

6 @ Nets, Win: The Bulls' depth wins them another game.

8 @ Hornets, Win: Unless the Bulls are partying on Bourbon Street the night before, they will win.

10 @ Bobcats, Win: The Bulls sleepwalk to a win in this one.

12 @ Celtics, Loss: The end of the trip catches up with Tom Thibodeau's team.

14 Vs. Kings, Win: Bulls struggle to get a win in first game after long trip.

16 Vs. Celtics, Win: Noah gets the best of Kevin Garnett in this one.

18 Vs. Nets, Win: Will Dwight Howard be playing for the Nets at this point?

20 Vs. Hawks, Win: Kirk Hinrich plots his move back to the Bulls from the Hawks' bench.

22 Vs. Bucks, Win: Brandon Jennings is in Rose's shadow ... again.

28 Vs. Bobcats, Win: Bulls pick up first win after the All Star break.

29 @ Spurs, Loss: San Antonio isn't the same team it used to be, but the Spurs are still pretty good.

March

2 @ Cavs, Win: Hamilton has another good shooting night for the Bulls.

4 @ Sixers, Loss: Bulls continue their Philly struggles.

5 Vs. Pacers, Loss: The Bulls can't win them all at home, right?

7 @ Bucks, Win: Rose refuses to allow his team to lose three in a row.

8 Vs. Magic, Win: The odds are slim that Howard will still be playing for the Magic at this point.

10 Vs. Jazz, Win: When all else fails, give the ball to Rose and get out of the way.

12 Vs. Knicks, Win: Bulls win an exciting battle at the United Center.

14 Vs. Heat, Win: The most electric atmosphere of the season to date.

16 Vs. Blazers, Win: The hits just keep on coming at home.

19 @ Magic, Win: Who will the new Magic star be at this point?

21 @ Raptors, Loss: The Bulls are due for a letdown against a bad team. It happens to everybody.

24 Vs. Raptors, Win: Thibodeau gets his team back on track.

26 Vs. Nuggets, Win: Are all the Nuggets back from China yet?

28 Vs. Hawks, Loss: The Hawks play an inspired game against a tired Bulls team.

30 Vs. Pistons, Win: Seriously, the Pistons are bad.

April

1 @ Thunder, Loss: Bulls lose a potential Finals preview.

2 Vs. Rockets, Win: What will the injury situation look like at this point?

5 Vs. Celtics, Win: The Bulls get up for a big one against Boston.

8 @ Knicks, Win: Rose and company take care of business against an improving Knicks team.

10 Vs. Knicks Win: Another win against Carmelo and friends.

12 Vs. Heat, Win: Another Eastern Conference finals preview.

15 @ Pistons, Win: The Bulls take advantage of a few days off before this one.

16 Vs. Wizards, Win: Nick Young wonders what might have been in Chicago.

18 @ Bobcats, Loss: The Bulls can't find the effort on this night.

19 @ Heat, Loss: Dwyane Wade comes through in the clutch in this one.

21 Vs. Mavericks, Win: The Bulls respond with a nice effort against the defending champs.

25 @ Pacers, Loss: The Pacers defeat a Bulls team that has already locked up its postseason seed.

26. Vs. Cavs, Win: Thibodeau's team ends on a regular season high note.

Projected final record: 49-17