After the Bulls put the cherry on top of their up-and-down season with a disappointing, yet not surprising 106-97 loss to the Nets in New Jersey Wednesday night, Scott Skiles was all smiles.

That’s because his dream of setting sail with Mickey, Minnie, Pluto and the rest of the gang on a luxury Disney Cruise during the second round of the playoffs was still very much alive.

“Can you believe it?” a visibly elated Skiles said. “I can’t believe we lost this one! Holy crap, it’s like a dream come true! I have no doubt we’ll get the crap beat out of us by the Heat in the first round and I’ll be able to go on my Disney Cruise after all.”

Instead of pulling together and finishing the regular season with a victory to secure 50 wins and the second seed in the East, the foul-happy Bulls trailed the entire game and were never able to close the gap against the determined Nets.

The sloppy loss wasted strong efforts by Kirk Hinrich, who led the team with 20 points, Andres Nocioni, who put up 19 points and committed 1,294,384 fouls, and Luol “The Double-Double Machine” Deng, who posted his team-high 17th double-double of the season with 15 points and 11 rebounds.

Subsequently, the Bulls drop to the fifth seed and will play the defending champion Miami Heat in the first round of the playoffs. They will, however, retain home-court advantage throughout the series, despite the fact that the Heat are the fourth seed.

So what exactly does this mean for the Bulls? One word: Pain.

At least that’s what Miami Heat guard Dwayne Wade is forecasting.

“These guys think they can beat us,” Wade said. “But the joke’s on them. This season we took a nod from the movie ‘White Men Can’t Jump’ and we’ve been hustling the entire league the whole season. But it’s time for us to bring the thunder and show our real stuff.”

Brace yourselves, Bulls fans. The playoffs could get ugly.

Number of the night: 3
Number of people up actually understand how the Bulls were able to retain home-court advantage even though they dropped to the fifth seed. The whole process makes this writer’s head hurt.

heckler editorial staff