They have a chance to do just that on Tuesday night.
Game 5 is in Chicago, and if the Wizards prevail, they will advance in the playoffs for just the third time since the 1970s. As commanding as their lead is, Gooden knows just how quickly it can go away.
''We had a chance to put `em down and finish them and we didn't - and then they started a dynasty in the Eastern Conference for the next five, six years,'' Gooden said. ''That was something I always looked back at. We could've beat that team, being up 3-1, just one (more) game. Who knows? The Pistons would've probably never been the Pistons.''
Detroit went on to make the first of six straight trips to the Eastern Conference finals and won the championship in 2004.
The Wizards just won 44 games with John Wall and Bradley Beal leading the way to reach the playoffs for the first time since 2008. The Bulls are simply trying to hang on after clawing their way to 48 wins.
''I believe we have a resilient group and I believe we'll find a way,'' coach Tom Thibodeau said.
The Bulls have been bogged down by slow starts. They've had their difficulties with Wall, Beal and Trevor Ariza not to mention Nene - when he's been available.
That was one of the most discouraging aspects of Sunday's 98-89 loss. Even though Nene was serving a suspension for grabbing Jimmy Butler's head in Game 3, the Wizards still prevailed.