Tag:Chicago Bulls
Posted on: February 12, 2012 10:56 pm
Edited on: February 13, 2012 9:56 am
 

Derrick Rose and the Bulls' big picture

Derrick Rose is out with back spasms, but it turns out it's been a recurring issue. (Getty Images)
By Matt Moore 

The fact that Derrick Rose (back) missed Sunday's game against the Celtics normally wouldn't raise red flags -- until it was reported that he will see a back specialist Monday and has been experiencing pain in his back for some time. That raises the following questions:

--Why are we just finding out Derrick Rose has been dealing with back spasms for a week?

--Why are the Bulls, who are quite secretive about injuries, burning Rose and Luol Deng at both ends through injuries?

--What happens if coach Tom Thibodeau, notorious for too many minutes on key personnel, pushes them too far -- particularly in a condensed season?

We start with this from the Chicago Tribune in regards to when exactly this back issue popped up for Rose: 
"It's been hurting the whole trip," Rose said. "I just played through it. It tended to get worse after every game. I was really worried about it. But I'm trying to stay positive. I don't know what the diagnosis is. I just know my back is not right."

Rose said he doesn't know what prompted the pain or exactly when it started. He was seen getting stretched on the sideline during stoppages of play as far back as the second game of the trip, on Jan. 30 in Washington.

Rose played spectacularly at New York and Milwaukee, skipped the second half of the Feb. 6 game in New Jersey, struggled through 22 minutes on Wednesday in New Orleans and sat on Friday in Charlotte.

"It just came from out of nowhere," Rose said. "That's the scary thing about it. ... I could barely walk (after New Orleans). It's killing me not being able to play, especially this game, or when I do play my minutes are definitely down. Hopefully, I'll get treatments and it calms down. If not, I'll take my time."
via Chicago Bulls: Derrick Rose will see back specialist Monday - chicagotribune.com.

Wait, so Rose has had this issue for a few weeks and has been playing on it?

OK, so not so surprising. NBA players are always dealing with a variety of ailments. Players play through pain on a regular basis and if they were held out because of every bit of tightness or discomfort they would never play. This season measn it's worse than usual.

But if Rose is different. He's already dealt with multiple issues this year, most recently an ankle sprain that held him out multiple games. The account given by Rose indicates that he had a problem, played through it, it got worse, played through it, it got worse, and he played through it.

Bulls' head coach Tom Thibodeau is notorious for playing his guys too many minutes, with Luol Deng the most extreme example, logging 35-plus minutes even in blowouts. There have been questions about whether Thibodeau is risking damaging his players and running them down with a long and grueling playoff run still yet to go. You would think that with Rose being the MVP, making up the vast majority of the offense, its best and most important player, and the key to any championship run the Bulls may have, that there would be an emphasis on resting him to keep him fresh as to avoid running him down. Instead, the Bulls played him against three lottery/borderline lottery teams when they already have a multiple-game lead on the Heat for the top spot in the East and even if they were to hold Rose out a month, could very well still be in the top three. Rose could sit the rest of the season and still be a top-five seed.

The Bulls are pretty secretive about injuries. Nearly everything is "day-to-day, gametime decision." Luol Deng tore a ligament in his wrist. Day-to-day, gametime decision. Derrick Rose can't move or breathe. Day-to-day, gametime decision. And much like the Patriots in football, it works. It keeps things hidden from the opponent. But versus the NFL, with limited media availability, the NBA plays nightly, which means these situations seem to pop up constantly. 

To be clear, it's not that the Bulls are forcing him out there, nor are they being irresponsible. Rose and Deng have both played well on their injuries.  They know how they feel. They know if they can play. But there's also a heightened sense of responsibility to one another the Bulls possess and it seems to border on the pathological. Guys play through pain all the time, but this season has to be about thinking long-term. You can't survive in this schedule with an injury, and the results are piling up on the Bulls. 

Hopefully the specialist discovers nothing of note, and Rose is able to return to the floor. But questions about what cost the Bulls are putting into their regular season record at the cost of their long-term durability will persist.
Posted on: February 12, 2012 6:24 pm
Edited on: February 12, 2012 11:27 pm
 

Report Card: Celtics survive Rose-less Bulls

Posted by Royce Young

 Rondo put together maybe the finest lines of the season when his team needed it most. (Getty Images)

Each night, Eye on Basketball brings you what you need to know about the games of the NBA. From great performances to terrible clock management the report card evaluates and eviscerates the good, the bad, and the ugly from the night that was.

Rajon Rondo
Rondo's line: 32 points, 15 assists, 10 rebounds. That, boys and girls, is quite the triple-double. When the Celtics needed something from someone the most, Rondo was there. He played his best game of the season, albeit against C.J. Watson and not against Derrick Rose. Still, he stepped up big time for Boston and carried his limping team to a win.
Kobe Bryant
Kobe isn't always as clutch as some like to pretend he is, but he still can hit that shot that breaks your back. With the Lakers looking at an ugly loss in Toronto, Kobe drilled an impossible baseline jumper to put L.A. up one, which they held on to for a tougher-than-expected win over the scrappy Raptors. 27 points on 23 shots is probably more "B" worthy and the Lakers won this game because of Pau Gasol but who cares, game-winner!
Boston Celtics
The Celtics need wins any way they can get them. And if that means beating the Bulls without Derrick Rose, so be it. It's still a win over the East's best team (record wise), which counts for something. Boston had dropped two straight including a bad one to the Raptors. The Celtics tried to blow a 14-point lead late in the fourth but held on to put away a nice win. So they didn't have to beat Rose. Boston's taking them any way it can get them. Besides, the Bulls have played pretty well without Rose and the rest of that roster isn't trash.
Chicago Bulls Down three with a minute left, you know Tom Thibodeau had to be looking at Derrick Rose thinking, "Hmm, maybe I could squeeze just a minute..." Even without their MVP, the Bulls battled back from 14 down and had a real chance to completely devastate the Celtics. They came up short, but it was definitely a noble effort. And finished 6-3 on a nine-game road trip.
Boston's "Big 3"
Good thing Rondo did the heavy lifting, because the Celtics' Big Three certainly did not. Kevin Garnett's help defense was terrific, but in terms of the box score, Garnett, Ray Allen and Paul Pierce combined for just 33 points on 12-27 shooting. Again, Rondo had 32 by himself.
C.J. Watson Filling the shoes of Derrick Rose is like stepping into a couple size 50s. C.J. Watson has done serviceable work, but he was very average against Boston. He gave up a triple-double to Rondo and while he had 23 points, he needed 23 shots to get it and took a miserable, contested deep 2-pointer with 22 seconds left and the Bulls down three.
Chicago's bench
Most like to call the Bulls' bench mob the best in the league, but they were completely worthless Sunday. A total of 16 points on 6-23 shooting from the Chicago reserves. John Lucas III actually was their top scorer off the pine with eight. That's not going to get it done when you don't have Rose. 
Scott Foster
The same official that blew the goaltending call in the Portland-Oklahoma City game appears to have gaffed again with a crucial late call in the Toronto-Lakers contest. The Raptors had possession with four seconds left down 93-92, taking the ball out at midcourt. With Dwane Casey trying to call a timeout from the bench, Foster called the Raps for a five second call after failing to get the ball in. Problem is, besides missing the timeout from Casey, is Foster appeared to blow the whistle at four seconds. (Update: The NBA says Foster got the call right with the official time being 5.8 seconds. He still didn't award Casey a timeout though.)

Posted on: February 12, 2012 3:35 pm
Edited on: February 14, 2012 6:40 am
 

Rose sees specialist for back, is day-to-day

Posted by Royce Young

UPDATE: Via the Chicago Tribune: "Back specialist confirmed Bulls' diagnosis of Rose. Lower back spasms. Nothing structurally wrong with back. Muscular issue. Day-to-day."

---

Derrick Rose has been battling an ailing back and sat out Sunday's game against the Celtics.

He exited a game last week because of back spasms and sat out two games for the Bulls. The spasms started Jan. 29, which kicked off a nine-game road trip for Chicago.

"The first time I remember [the back problems] happening were in high school," Rose told ESPN Chicago. "But college I didn't have it. First couple of years [in the NBA] I didn't have it. All of a sudden it just happened now. Hopefully, [Monday] I'll meet with some people and try to figure something out."

Rose actually said he was "scared" about the pain. Which is surely scary to Bulls fans. He's planning to see a back specialist Monday for the pain.

“Probably go see some people tomorrow, have them look at it. But I don’t know yet,” Rose said via CSN Chicago. “I can’t say I’m going to be out. If I feel good tomorrow, I’m definitely going to play then, but I don’t know yet.”

Rose is obviously more concerned with getting healthy than an early February game against the Celtics. Still, he wants to play and the Bulls need him. Behind him is a serviceable backup, C.J. Watson, but the Bulls' injury problems are piling up. Richard Hamilton, Rose, Luol Deng -- Chicago needs to get healthy.

Rose has missed seven games this season. In his three years prior, he'd only missed six total. He is averaging 22.0 points and 7.0 assists per game this season.

Posted on: February 9, 2012 9:45 am
 

Isiah Thomas counseling Derrick Rose

Isiah Thomas has given Derrick Rose advice on how to tough out a season through injuries. (Getty Images)
By Matt Moore 

Getting past Isiah Thomas' reputation as the Titanic captain of the 2000's Knicks and current superstar meddler is a bit of a trick. He damaged so much of his reputation as a Hall of Fame point guard and fearless, relentless winner that people forget he has a lot of quality advice for players in handling themselves on the court. The guy's playing reputation is nearly spotless, and there's a reason he provides counsel to so many superstars, sometimes too much so and pretty blatantly in violation of NBA tampering rules, regardless of his official position with the Knicks. 

And one player that's recently turned to Thomas for advice on how to survive the beating a small point guard takes in this league is the MVP. From ESPN Chicago:  
Isiah Thomas said he met Rose last year after a game in Detroit and that Rose contacted him after the Bulls' season had ended.

"He was pretty down," Thomas told ESPNChicago.com by phone on Wednesday. "He asked me 'How did you do it? How did you win back-to-back championships at this size?' And my response to him was that once you understand your opponent and know your opponent better than you know yourself, you'll win."

....

"... He's somebody where in Chicago, you definitely got to look up to, especially being a guard, winning championships in this league," Rose said. "[I] try to take things out of his game and put them into mine. But [he's] a cool dude. I played against his son in AAU. And he's from Chicago so I got to look up to him."
via Chicago Bulls Derrick Rose sought advice from Isiah Thomas - ESPN Chicago.

The conversation essentially surrounded how to absorb a beating and play through it. Thomas' advice was largely "deal with it." Which is noble, but given the compact schedule and the fact Rose is dealing with a toe injury and back spasms, some rest might not be the worst idea, especially with what the Bulls have been able to do without him. 

In last year's playoffs, Rose suffered an ankle sprain in the first round. From there he just took more and more of a beating. There's nothing that can be done if Rose is injured in the playoffs, these things happen. But getting him healthy so he's not carrying more physical baggage into the postseason should be a priority for the Bulls. Wednesday night the Bulls played Rose 22 minutes in a game in which the opponent did not score for the first five minutes of the game. The Bulls lead by double digits essentially for the first four minutes on. The game was never in doubt. Sitting Rose against New Orleans would have been a perfect situation. Instead, the perception is that Thibodeau "only" played Rose 22 minutes. It's time to start looking at the big picture.
Posted on: February 9, 2012 2:01 am
 

Will Ferrell hilarious lineups video

By Matt Moore 

There was almost nothing enjoyable for Hornets fans Wednesday night in their 90-67 loss to Chicago which was the kind of game you show kids to make sure they never play basketball, ever. Almost. 

Will Ferrell was in town to do player introductions, and he was predictably hilarious. If you dig Ferrell's specific brand of humor and the NBA, this was a perfect nexus. Here's video: 

 

I think my favorite is "He still lives with his mother, Carlos Boozer." Though "His favorite movie is 'The Notebook,' Derrick Rose" is also quality. Derogative while not being mean or a series of cheap shots.  Good clean, fun. 

Unlike the game. Which was not good, clean, nor fun.  
Posted on: February 7, 2012 1:01 am
Edited on: February 7, 2012 1:05 am
 

Monday, bloody Monday strikes the NBA

Chauncey Billups was one of several players to go down with injuries Monday. (Getty Images)
By Matt Moore

If there was a tipping point for when the compacted schedule would really start to take a significant toll on the league through injury, you have to wonder if it was Monday night. Here's a rundown of the M*A*S*H* unit the league turned into Monday night in a torrent of injuries. 

  • The Hornets announced Jason Smith is out one week with a concussion he sustained Saturday against the  Pistons. 
  • Elton Brand was held out of the Sixers' game against the Lakers with a thumb injury. 

 That's one night of action and we haven't even gotten the random trickle-down injuries from the late games yet. Usually we'd be about a week away from the All-Star Game but since we haven't actually gotten through that many games due to the late start following the lockout, there's another three weeks before the All-Star break provides some relief. Vince Carter said last week that this year was about survival and you can tell how much that has an impact on teams' approaches. It's just a rough year for all teams in terms of managing wear and tear with this schedule, and Monday night was one in which a lot of teams lost that battle.
Posted on: February 6, 2012 8:58 pm
Edited on: February 6, 2012 9:03 pm
 

Derrick Rose has back spasms, does not return

Posted by Royce Young

Derrick Rose left Chicago's game against the Nets in the first half with back spasms and did not return.

Part of the reason though might be due to the fact the Bulls were absolutely blasting the Nets at the time Rose left. The Bulls led 35-14 after a quarter and 62-37 at the half. Rose played just 10 minutes and scored four points on 2-3 shooting, zero assists and two turnovers.

Rose has missed a few games this season because of a toe injury, but the back spasms likely won't sideline him for much more than just the second half against New Jersey.
Posted on: February 3, 2012 5:26 pm
 

Friday 5 with KB: Power plays

By Matt Moore



In this week's edition of 
the Friday 5, KB talks the best power forward in the West, how good the Bulls are, and whether Griffin-over-Perkins was a dunk . You can follow Ken Berger on Twitter @KBergCBS


1. Who's the best power forward in the West?

If you consider Pau Gasol to be a power forward (and I do, despite the fact that he doesn't play with much power), it's hard to do better. But in terms of all-around game, LaMarcus Aldridge is about to pass him, if he hasn't already.

2. Are the Bulls better, worse, or the same as they were last year?

Better. Rip Hamilton gives them an experienced scorer for the playoffs and makes their bench more potent -- whether he starts or Ronnie Brewer does, either way. Omer Asik will be ready to contribute in a meaningful way in the playoffs and is becoming a bear to deal with on screens. Also, I love the way Derrick Rose has responded to falling short against Miami in the conference finals, with a quiet but edgy determination to go farther this time.

3. Brian Cardinal noted to me this week that teams that can go 9, 10 deep are having success. Do you think the need for depth in this crazy compacted schedule will carry over in the playoffs or are we just going to see the usual 8-man rotation we usually see?

I think it depends on the team, but for the most part, the extra days of rest, practice and game-planning will allow teams to go with a more orthodox rotation. For teams with quality bench players (Spurs, Mavs, Thunder, Bulls, Sixers), getting them additional floor time and experience during the regular season will make them more effective in the postseason.

4. What should the Pistons do to fix this mess?

Where to begin? As I alluded to in Postups, Joe Dumars could be in for some tough times. For starters, I'd see if a financially flexible contender would be willing to take Ben Gordon off my hands between now and the deadline. Then, I'd amnesty Charlie Villanueva next summer and go from there. Where I'd be going, I'm not sure, but I'd get moving in that direction -- whatever that direction is.

5. How does the Blake Griffin/Perkins dunk measure up on your all-time scale?

I don't really keep conscious track of such things. But I enjoyed the EOB roundtable on the best dunks ever, and I'll say this: 1) Like Dwight Howard's "Superman" stunt in the dunk contest, if you don't flush the ball and make the rim snap, it ain't a dunk. Impressive that Griffin is the only player in the league who can get so high above the rim that he's literally throwing the ball through the rim from on high, but still, it ain't a dunk; and 2) Whatever it was, it still wasn't better than Vince Carter over Frederic Weis.
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com