Derrick Rose and his teammates will return to the court tonight as the Bulls take on the Memphis Grizzlies in their second preseason matchup of the year. Catch all the action on Comcast SportsNet beginning at 7:00.
ST. LOUIS — The day after his first NBA game since April 28, 2012, Derrick Rose — and more importantly, his rehabilitated left ACL — experienced no ill effects heading into the Bulls’ practice Sunday afternoon at St. Louis University’s Chaifetz Arena.
“I’m feeling good. Thibs has been asking me the same thing. I’m feeling all right, though. After the game, I could have played some more, but they took me out, so if anything, just watching me and making sure that I’m all right,” he said. “I think conditioning and rehab and training definitely put me in the spot that I’m in right now, where I’m recovering real quick, I’m eating right. My diet changed, and it’s actually preventing a lot of injuries, knick-knack injuries. In the future, just preparing myself the right way and staying healthy, that’s the key.”
Rose played 20 minutes and 26 seconds in Saturday’s preseason-opening win over the Pacers in Indianapolis but wanted to play more.
“It’s tough, especially for it to be a close game like it was and to be sitting out,” explained the former league MVP, who scored 13 points. “Just wanted to test myself a little bit more, but I wasn’t able to.”
Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau took a more cautious approach.
“We’ll see when he gets out there. So far, so good. I thought he played well yesterday and we’ve been seeing it in practice, so it was good to see it in a game. I thought he was real aggressive. As the game went on, I thought he got stronger and stronger,” he said. “The big thing we’re looking at is his wind, and he felt really good. He wanted to play more, which is good, and we’re just going to take it day by day and if he needs some rest, we’ll give him more rest, and it’s just step by step. Don’t skip any steps. That’s all we want him to do.
“That would be the case even if he weren’t coming off injury. With all the starters, you look at the entire month as your training camp. They’re not playing starters’ minutes yet, but we’ll gradually build up. Whatever (Rose) can handle he’ll get,” the coach continued. “Whatever you’re doing, put everything into it. You’re not only getting him ready, you’re getting the entire team ready. We’ve got to get our bench ready. The important thing is everyone focusing in on making a commitment to the team, put everything you have into each and every day, and strive for improvement.”
The Bulls take on Memphis at St. Louis’ Scottrade Center in their second exhibition game Monday evening, in advance of departing for Brazil, where they will take on Washington in an Oct. 12 contest in Rio de Janeiro.