Chicago Bulls

Banged-up Rose expects to play Wednesday

291699.jpg

Banged-up Rose expects to play Wednesday

Tuesday, Dec. 14, 2010
2:37 PM

By Aggrey Sam
CSNChicago.com

No reason to sound the alarm just yet: Derrick Rose's scary tumble in the fourth quarter of Monday night's win over Indiana won't require him to miss Wednesday's game at Toronto, if the Bulls All-Star point guard has his way.

"It was very tough last night," Rose told reporters after Tuesday's practice at the Berto Center. "Right now, I'm just feeling a little sore, but hopefully I'll be playing tomorrow."

"If it's up to me, I'm playing, knowing that it's only sore and usually I could play through soreness."

Rose, whose injuries were classified as a sprained right wrist and a bruised right elbow--the third-year guard said he only "tweaked" his left ankle on a play prior to the hard fall--surprisingly said that neither of those injuries were bothering him the most Tuesday.

"It would have to be my (right) hip. My hip is really messed up," said Rose, who didn't participate in Tuesday's practice and wore a brace on his injured wrist. "It's (Rose's right wrist) not that bad...if anything, my (right) elbow hurts more than my wrist. Right now, I'm a little beat up, but I think that I should be able to play through it."

"I've just been getting treatment. I'll be getting treatment on the plane (Tuesday afternoon), getting treatment in Toronto and hopefully for the game, I should be all right," continued Rose, who will ice his injuries, get electronic stimulation and take painkillers. "Last night was probably the worst I've felt in a long time, knowing that my whole body was sore. I had to soak everything. It was a bad night."

"I'm just happy and blessed that I didn't break anything."

At the time of the fall--which occurred midway through the game's final period when Rose was undercut in the air by Pacers swingman Brandon Rush--Rose feared the worst.

"At first, I thought I was going to hit my head. I kind of held myself with my arm and wrist," said Rose of his thought process. "That's basketball. You learn from it, situations like that. I think I was just mad that they weren't calling the calls and I was just trying to drive very hard and make them call it, and that ended up happening."

"I feel like a Bears player. I've got all these injuries."

Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau was cautiously optimistic when he addressed reporters.

"He had some soreness today, but everything appears to be fine," said Thibodeau after Tuesday's practice. "He's a little nicked up, but his ankle's fine. There's a little soreness in the elbow, a little soreness in the wrist."

"If he says he can play, then he'll play. He's moving around pretty good today," he added. "We won't know until he goes through shootaround tomorrow."

"He has a lot of toughness, both mental and physical. He doesn't like to take any plays off. He doesn't like to take any days off. He attacks the basket, he gets knocked down, he gets up, he'll keep going. He doesn't shy away."

During the game, Rose was whistled for his first technical foul in the NBA--and his entire basketball career.

"That was my first one ever. High school or grammar school, college, ever," Rose revealed. "I think the play where I drove, it had to be a charge or a blocking foul. They didn't call anything. It kind of got to me."

"I said it was 'some b.s.' It took him a while to give me the tech. I thought it was over with. I guess it got to him. I'm running back down the court and he called it," he continued. "He was shocked that I said. That's why, I guess, it took him so long."

Rose did find some humor in the situation, joking, "Hopefully I don't get anymore techs because I need that money. It's a recession out here."

Rose also touched upon the Bulls' current six-game and his growing chemistry with Carlos Boozer, who led the team with 22 points and 18 rebounds Monday.

"It's (the team's confidence) high, but we know that we can't get big-headed. We've got to continually improve on our defense, especially on our help side--just clogging the paint, just making it hard for the other team to score--so we can get into the open court," said Rose. "Anywhere around the basket, if I pass it to him (Boozer), he's going to get fouled or hit the shot. He's still getting in the groove. Some of the jump shots he took last night, those are shots he usually hits. We're very confident in his ability to shoot the ball and finish in the paint."

Despite his injuries, Rose had no hesitation when asked if Monday's scare would alter his game or mindset.

"I'm going to continue to drive. I didn't come into this league from shooting jump shots. I came into this league from driving."

Aggrey Sam is CSNChicago.com's Bulls Insider. Follow him @CSNBullsInsider on Twitter for up-to-the-minute Bulls information and his take on the team, the NBA and much more.

Doug Collins returns to Bulls as senior advisor

doug_collins_joins_bulls_front_office_slide.jpg
USA TODAY

Doug Collins returns to Bulls as senior advisor

In a surprise announcement, the Chicago Bulls have brought former coach Doug Collins back into the fold, naming him a senior advisor to Executive Vice President John Paxson.

Collins was a coach with the Bulls and regarded as one of the best basketball minds through his various stops through the NBA as well as his commentary for Turner Sports and ESPN. Collins held front office authority in Detroit after the Pistons drafted Grant Hill, so he's familiar with the inner workings of the NBA.

More importantly, he coached Paxson during his three-year tenure as head coach, from 1986-1989, so one can presume Paxson will value Collins' expertise and opinions. The two sides have been discussing a role for quite some time, so although the announcement is a surprise, the marriage didn't come together hastily.

Collins is expected to be an extra voice in the room, doing a lot of observing and one can assume, bridging the gap many believe exists between the front office and coaching staff. Collins has residence in Chicago, with his son (Chris) coaching the Northwestern Wildcats so it's also a matter of convenience as well.

“We are pleased to have Doug return to the Bulls and have him join our front office. As our organization transitions into this next phase, we feel like Doug will bring valuable perspective with his vast knowledge of the NBA and the game of basketball,” said Paxson. “His enthusiasm and expertise make this a great fit for the Bulls. As an advisor, he will regularly contribute observations, insights and suggestions, and he will be part of conversations throughout this building. I know from talking to Doug he is excited to join us at this time, and we look forward to tapping into his experience to help improve this team.”

One can liken it to the Golden State Warriors bringing in Jerry West as a senior advisor several years ago, and West's influence was felt at the executive level as the Warriors continued their climb to the top of the NBA. West is perhaps the NBA's most decorated executive in the modern era, having shaped the Magic Johnson-led Lakers of the 1980's to five championships.

West has since moved into the same role with the Los Angeles Clippers, as he'll assist them in reshaping their franchise after the trade of Chris Paul.

Clearly the Bulls are not at the stage of development the Warriors were when West joined, starting what could be a long and arduous rebuild. Needing more knowledgeable and trusted voices in the room is what they were looking for, and presumably they feel Collins has been around today's NBA long enough to provide insight on a changing league.

“Doug will be great in this capacity for our organization. The position of ‘senior advisor’ has proven to work well around the NBA in recent years, and I am confident the same will hold true with the Bulls,” said Chicago Bulls Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf in a statement. “The fact that our relationship goes back more than 30 years certainly helps, but he is especially qualified to assist our leadership in rebuilding the Bulls.”

Lottery reform might not be all bad for rebuilding Bulls

draft-lottery-915.jpg
USA TODAY

Lottery reform might not be all bad for rebuilding Bulls

At first glance, reports of the NBA pushing for major lottery reform might seem like terrible timing for rebuilding teams like the Bulls. The league's competition committee is trying to come up with a system that will discourage teams from tanking to improve their odds of winding up with the best possible draft position.

Under the current plan, the team that finishes with the worst record has a 25% chance of winding up with the top pick and selects no lower than fourth. The odds then decrease for teams that finish between two and 14.

The new plan would flatten the odds for the bottom four teams, all given a 14% chance to win the top pick in the lottery. The idea is teams will no longer have an extra incentive to lose if it doesn't help them end up with better draft position.

But here's where the Bulls come in. Even though the new plan is expected to be approved by league owners, it won't be implemented until the 2019 draft. That's crucial for a Bulls' team that is likely to have one of the worst records in the league in 2017-'18, but could improve pretty quickly with some good fortune in the summer of 2018.

If the Bulls land a Top 3 pick next June, they could draft one of two elite forward prospects, Missouri's Michael Porter Jr. or Duke's Marvin Bagley III, or 18-year-old international star Luka Doncic. Then they could go into free agency with somewhere between 40 and 50 million dollars of cap space to land a couple free agents to give the roster a big time boost.

I understand the Bulls' record in free agency has not been all that great over the years, and they're not going to convince LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Paul George or Russell Westbrook to come to a rebuilding team. But with so few teams expected to have significant cap space, why couldn't the Bulls make a run at next level stars like DeMarcus Cousins, Isaiah Thomas (if healthy) or DeAndre Jordan? Plus, they could always go the route of adding two solid rotation players like Avery Bradley, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Wilson Chandler or Danny Green rather than shoot for one max contract All-Star.

Say the Bulls get Porter Jr. in the draft to handle the small forward spot, then sign Cousins in free agency to play center. All of a sudden you've got a starting line-up of Cousins, Lauri Markkanen, Porter, Zach LaVine and Kris Dunn, all lottery picks. At that point, the Bulls wouldn't be thinking about finishing near the bottom of the league to improve draft position. They'd be thinking about what moves they could make to get back to the playoffs.

So, when you read these articles about lottery reform, don't look at it as a huge negative for the Bulls. If all goes according to plan, they'll only have one season of being in strong contention for the No. 1 pick, and the rules aren't expected to change for the 2018 lottery.