DEERFIELD, ILL. As his rehabilitation from ACL surgery progresses, sidelined Bulls point guard Derrick Rose continues to take more steps in the recovery progress. The former league MVP is now taking predictable contact in practice, Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau revealed Tuesday.
Obviously its knowing whats coming and so, hes handled that part great. Hes done a little one-on-one, and thats coming around. But everyone has to be patient, the coach explained after Tuesdays afternoon session at the Berto Center. The next step will be a regular practice and he hasnt done that yet, so once he does that, youll know hes getting closer.
While Rose is making progress and demonstrates to the assembled media, in the waning moments of practices, that hes retained his outside shooting touch, it doesnt mean that his return is imminent.
According to a person with knowledge of the situation, the Chicago native will participate in three-on-three drills in the near future before being cleared to play in full-court five-on-five activities, hopefully by the end of the month, at which point, hell practice extensively before a likely return sometime after the All-Star break.
Weve got to feel good about this and the most important thing is hes got to feel really good about it. But its the type of injury where you have to be patient and hes handling his part great. Hes upbeat, hes doing his rehab daily and thats his entire focus, and the team, theyve just got to lock into our improvement and our next opponent, and then, at some point, hell rejoin us, Thibodeau said.
Ive talked to him every day. Im glad that hes approached things the way that he has. Hes been patient, hes been upbeat, hes doing his part. You couldnt ask for anything more. He puts everything he has into the rehab and then, hes fully engaged with his teammates. Even from the time he got injured, we were pretty much in daily contact. Hes doing great and coming along. Hes right where he should be.
Roses teammate, Joakim Noah, added: Were not really looking over our shoulders because hes with us every day, so we get to see the progress, but I think its good. Right now, were just trying to play the best basketball possible, knowing that he is going to come back. Thats a good feeling, but now weve got to keep grinding it out and keep getting these wins. The truth is, he has to be patient and we need to give him as much time as he needs, so he can come back when hes 100 percent.
Hes into it and its good to have Derrick on the road. Hes definitely watching the games and passionate about the games. He obviously wants to be out there, but he needs to be patient, he continued. Its exciting stuff, whats going on over here. Were working hard, were playing pretty good, weve got some big games coming up and you know weve got our MVP hes going to come back so yeah, its pretty cool.
Meanwhile, the teams current starting point guard, veteran Kirk Hinrich, missed Tuesdays practice, after suffering an elbow injury in Monday nights home win over Cleveland. His status is day-to-day, according to Thibodeau.
Hinrich is a little dinged-up on his elbow, I guess, Thibodeau explained, noting that Hinrich was injured on a play when he was hustling for a loose ball against the Cavaliers. I dont think he had stitches. Just bandaged up right now.