For now, Indiana Pacers forward Danny Granger isn't as unpopular in Chicago as, say, Steve Bartman, Jay Cutler and Cheeseheads.

But he's making inroads.

After saying several times that he'd prefer to play the Chicago Bulls in the first round of the playoffs instead of the Boston Celtics, Granger has taken some shots from Bulls fans. At least one of them got ugly on Twitter, dropping the "N" bomb on Granger.

He responded with his own tweet, writing, in part, "Ain't the Bulls black?! lmao."

Of course, that's just one tweet -- "It just made me laugh," Granger said Tuesday -- but as the playoffs approach, there's every reason to believe the heat will be turned up. The Pacers and Bulls will likely open their series Saturday in Chicago, and Granger's quotes will get even more prominent play.

Hopefully, the series will be as compelling as the run-up.

But don't count on it.

"Boston's a different monster," Granger said last weekend. "They don't have the best record in the East, but they won championships; they know how to do it. They have four, five guys you have to worry about . . .

"Chicago, they go as Derrick Rose goes. If you make a concerted effort to stop Derrick Rose, you have a better chance of beating them."

And, no, Granger isn't backing off.

"Regardless of how (Boston) played after the All-Star break, a veteran team like that -- like the Lakers, too -- once they get in the playoffs, they can turn on that switch," he said Tuesday. "Chicago is obviously a really good team, but they're not as tested as a team like Boston."