Thibodeau: Rose is 'getting closer'

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Thibodeau: Rose is 'getting closer'

NEW YORKTom Thibodeau wouldnt say itthats not his stylebut the Bulls head coach indicated that Derrick Rose is closer to taking another major step in his recovery process.

Rose, whos taken part in drills featuring predictable contact as of late, could be nearing the stage where hes practicing as a full participant.

Well sort of evaluate it every week. Hes getting closer because hes taken on some contact, but its a step-by-step process and hes doing well. But everyone has to be patient, Thibodeau said before the Bulls 108-101 win Friday night over the Knicks at Madison Square Garden. Hes done his work, so its a well mapped-out plan. He goes step by step and when he handles one step well and hes comfortable, he moves on to the next one.

Hes not the first guy whos had this injury and I think when you look at the number of guys who have had the injury and what theyre doing after the injury, I think it tells you a lot about where medicine is today and what the rehab for the injury is, the coach continued.

Its a long process, so hes got a ways to go. He hasnt gone through a full practice yet. Hes got to do that for an extended amount of time, but hes doing extremely well. Hes approached it great. You couldnt ask for anything more and our team has done a great job with their approach, and thats the way we want to keep it right now.

Reading between the lines usually isnt advisable when it comes to coach-speak, especially when it involves injuries, but for Thibodeau, known for keeping things close to the vest, to not downplay things or give his standard response to a question about Rose is at the least, not discouraging.

The coach was outright positive when describing Roses mental state these days: You guys know him. Theres high maintenance, low maintenance and no maintenance, and thats Derrick. Thats who he is. Hes just a great team player, great teammate, hes mentally strong, hes got a great will and so, he understands what he has to go through and hes done a great job with it.

None of the above means anything definitive, but as Roses eventual return to the court looms, its heartening to know that things are still going according to schedule, regardless of whether the Bulls see fit to disclose that timetable.

Bulls fall flat in blowout loss in Dallas

Bulls fall flat in blowout loss in Dallas

DALLAS (AP) -- Wesley Matthews has taken greater responsibility with Dirk Nowitzki out of the Dallas Mavericks' lineup much of this season.

Matthews scored 20 of his 26 points in the second half of Dallas' 107-82 victory over the Chicago Bulls on Saturday night.

"Matthews was the star of the game, obviously," Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle said. "He is our leader right now with Dirk out. He really sets the tone for us in the locker room and on the floor. He is just the vocal guy."

Matthews has accepted the expanded role as Nowitzki has been limited to five games by a strained right Achilles tendon.

"I feel like that's one of the reasons why they brought me over here (from Portland). Through this rough patch, injuries and everything, everybody had to mold together. It's almost like we had to restructure ourselves. I think everybody has embraced that."

Harrison Barnes scored 17 of his 22 points in the first half to help Dallas improve to 4-15.

Chicago was coming off a 111-105 victory over defending champion Cleveland on Friday night.

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Jimmy Butler led Chicago with 26 points.

"I don't think anybody played well tonight," Butler said. "We didn't play with energy on either end of the floor."

Barnes powered the Mavericks to a 17-point first-quarter lead with eight points.

"They came out and threw the first punch and kept throwing, and we could just never recover from that," Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg said. "We did expend a lot of energy (Friday) night."

Dwight Powell (17) and rookie Dorian Finney-Smith (11) had career highs in scoring, and Deron Williams had a season-high 15 assists with only one turnover.

"The biggest thing was we were even (43-43) on the boards," Carlisle said. Andrew Bogut had a game-high 11 rebounds, and Powell grabbed eight.

Neither team scored in the first 2:15, but Dallas went on a 7-0 run over the next 1:20. The Mavericks led 23-6 with 3:17 left. The quarter ended with Dallas leading 29-18. Bogut had six points and eight rebounds.

Chicago pulled within six points three times in the second quarter, but Dallas finished the first half with a 57-45 lead. In the third quarter, Matthews had 14 points, and the Maverick led by as many as 21 points.

Morning Update: Bulls win first meeting with Cavs; LeBron pays off Cubs-Indians bet

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USA TODAY

Morning Update: Bulls win first meeting with Cavs; LeBron pays off Cubs-Indians bet

Here are some of Friday's top stories in Chicago sports:

Saturday on CSN: Bradley vs. Nevada; Illinois State vs. New Mexico

Dwyane Wade, Bulls take first blood with LeBron James, Cavs

Bears-49ers: And the winner is?

Jonathan Toews practices but won’t play vs. Flyers

For Cubs, winter meetings will be all about the hunt for pitching 

White Sox reportedly asking for No. 1 prospect plus more in trade return for Chris Sale

'Quarterback' Rajon Rondo executes Bulls' game plan, logs first triple-double of the year

White Sox agree to one-year deals with Brett Lawrie, Avisail Garcia

LeBron James pays off bet, rocks Cubs uniform to the United Center

High School Lites basketball roundup: Week 1