Noah joins Rose as Bulls' walking wounded

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Noah joins Rose as Bulls' walking wounded

Wednesday, Dec. 15, 2010
11:22 AM
By Aggrey Sam
CSNChicago.com

TORONTOHeading into Wednesdays game against the Raptors, Bulls point guard Derrick Rose was still unsure if he would play, as he recovers from injuries suffered in Mondays win over Indiana.

Ill have to see. Later on tonight, Ill make the decision. But if not, I have confidence in my team where I think we can still win this game, Rose told CSNChicago.com before the teams morning shootaround at the Air Canada Centre. Im still sore. My hip and my elbow are very sore right now, but thats basketball. Youre not always going to feel good, but youve still got to go ahead and do your job.

My wrist is fine, my ankle. Its just my elbow and my hip that are really bruised.

Rose, ever the competitor, would be chagrined at having to miss the contest, especially since the Bulls are in the midst of a six-game winning streak.

It would be tough, man, said the All-Star. Knowing that were on a roll right now and for me to sit out now because of a stupid injury, it hurts.

Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau gave his standard response about Roses situation prior to the shootaround.

Well see this morning after he goes through the shootaround if hes fine. He said he was feeling better, but we want to make sure he goes through the shootaround, said Thibodeau. If he doesnt have any problems, yes. He said yesterday he was feeling better and I talked to him last night again and he said he was feeling better then, so if everythings good, hell go.

Rose told CSNChicago.com that the notion that he should start playing with more caution bothers him a little bit.

In basketball, its going to be aggressive sometimes, Rose explained. Theres going to be times where you take hard fouls or youre going to fall hard, but youve just got to play through it.

If he doesnt suit up, Rose is confident that backup point guard C.J. Watsonwho scored 33 points in a last-second November loss at Denver in Roses absencewill fill in admirably.

Hes an aggressive point guard that can score the ball and run the team, so I have a lot of confidence in him. I remember I hated playing against him when he was in Golden State because he was always able to attack, so thats all I tell him, Rose told CSNChicago.com. Just play his regular game and everything will come to him.

Rose isnt the only Bulls player dealing with complications from an injury. Center Joakim Noah is dealing with soreness in his right hand.

Were going to diagnose it tonight, said Noah, who indicated that he would attempt to play through what was described as bruised tendons by a team source to the Chicago Tribunes K.C. Johnson, who first reported the story.

His hand is nicked up. Hell go through shootaround and if hes fine after going through shootaround, he plays, explained Thibodeau, who said any decision on whether Noah plays Wednesday will be made by the teams training and medical staffs, as well as Noah himself. I dont know specifically what it is. Two knuckles, his thumb. Those are the two areas where hes experiencing some soreness.

Basically, all the big guys in the league go through this. Their hands are constantly being raked. Its hard to recover from it because it continues to happen when youre rebounding the ball or going up for shots and they continue to strip. His shooting hand is nicked up.

Despite the maladies of two key Bulls, the teams mentality of the entire roster being able to fill in for a sidelined teammate will possibly be tested, as Rose and Noah are perhaps the most indispensable members of the team. Not that Thibodeau sees a major issue if they sit out, current winning streak or not.

Theyre going to go through shootaround. If they go through shootaround and there arent any problems, they play. If they go through shootaround and there are problems, they sit, Thibodeau explained. Thats the way it is and if thats the case, the next guy steps up and he does the job.

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.

Rajon Rondo used foul language with Bulls assistant coaches following loss to Mavs

Rajon Rondo used foul language with Bulls assistant coaches following loss to Mavs

The Rajon Rondo file has another suspension to the ledger, as he was suspended by the Bulls for one game for “conduct detrimental to the team” and will miss Monday night’s game against the Portland Trailblazers.

It’s the seventh incident in the past few years for Rondo where he’s been suspended by the NBA or the team he’s played for, which of course brings up queries as to the event in question.

Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg wouldn’t elaborate on what took place, only that he met with Rondo Sunday and that the two are on the same page. Saturday night, the Bulls lost in blowout fashion to the Dallas Mavericks, Rondo’s former team.

A source said he used some foul language to some assistant coaches, although he apologized afterwards to the team. One report said the assistant coach was Jim Boylen.

“He and I met yesterday, had a good meeting. He’ll meet us at the plane tonight,” Hoiberg said. “He’ll be back in uniform tomorrow night against Detroit and moving forward. As far as details guys, I’m not going to get in the details of it. We’re going to move past it, and again he’ll be back in uniform tomorrow.”

Hoiberg shut down every question about Rondo, only saying it wasn’t a physical altercation with any players or members of the coaching staff. With Rondo’s history of situations, Hoiberg said he understood the line of questioning but tried to walk the line of supporting the player as well.

“Sure, I understand that,” Hoiberg said. “But I’ll say this, Rajon, as we’ve all said, has been great. A great teammate. I’ve enjoyed the relationship that we developed, and again it’s not going to change moving forward.”

Rondo is averaging 8.2 points, 7.2 assists and 6.7 rebounds in 17 games, and is coming off a poor showing against Dallas, where he had five turnovers and just two points, two rebounds and two assists.

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The Bulls play the Pistons Tuesday to complete their four games in five nights stretch, and Jerian Grant will start in Rondo’s place.

“(Rondo’s) been great. I think this is just another bump in the road,” said Jimmy Butler, who also wouldn’t elaborate on what led to the suspension. “He's a phenomenal damn teammate and I back him on everything.”

When asked whether he agreed with the organizational decision to suspend Rondo, Butler said: “It's not my job to agree or disagree.”

Butler positioned himself as a big Rondo backer Monday in speaking to the media, as the two were together for an NBA Cares event with Robin Lopez.

“I don't feel his reputation fits him at all. Rondo's an incredible basketball player, friend, brother to me now, to us,” Butler said. “I think we love him here. I think the fans love him as well, the organization, I think everyone has nothing but great things to say about him. I don't see where that reputation came from at all.”

Butler wouldn’t even admit to being disappointed about the situation, choosing to stay out of the fray and not issue any controversial statements.

“Nope. Not at all. These things happen, and when things happen you handle it the way you're supposed to handle it,” Butler said. “I think we all love Rondo. I know I do. He's been a great mentor to me, he's made me a much better basketball player. We've got to go out and get one tonight.”

Bulls hand Rajon Rondo one-game suspension

Bulls hand Rajon Rondo one-game suspension

The Bulls are suspending Rajon Rondo for one game.

The organization sent out a press release Monday morning with the announcement their point guard would miss Monday night's game against the Portland Trail Blazers for conduct detrimental to the team.

According to Adrian Wojnarowski, Rondon had a "heated exchange" with a Bulls coach after Saturday's 107-82 loss to the Mavericks in Dallas.

Rondo's history is littered with behavioral issues. 

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He was suspended by the NBA one game almost exactly a year ago for using a "derogatory and offensive term towards an official" as a member of the Sacramento Kings.

Rondo is averaging 8.2 points, 7.2 assists and 6.7 rebounds per game this season in 17 contests.