Saturday, Feb. 19, 2011
Posted 10:10 p.m.
By Aggrey Sam
LOS ANGELES If competitions at exhibitions games were the true measure of ability, then the Bulls would be a lottery-bound squad, at least based on the All-Star Saturday Night performances of Derrick Rose and Taj Gibson.
That might be an overstatement, but neither of the Bulls fared particularly well in their respective events.
Rose participated in the Taco Bell Skills Challenge, an event he won in 2009. This time, his 35.7-second first-round time wasnt enough for him to advance to the events second and final round. The eventual winner of the competition was Golden State Warriors point guard Stephen Curry.
WATCH: Rose in skills competition
It was fun. I was a little rusty out there. The crowd was great. The best man won. He went out there did everything right, made the right passes. Thats why he won, said Rose afterwards. Steph, he had a great first round performance and that led to him winning.
Rose told reporters that the bounce pass competitors had to dribble around obstacles, make various passes and shots in the fastest time possible gave him the most trouble.
Thats huge out there. You really have to focus or youre going to be stuck on one spot for a long time, he explained. its usually that bounce pass. That always gets people. Hopefully if they take that out one year, Ill win again.
Rose also appeared to get confused at one point in the event, briefly going the wrong way.
Stupid mistakes like that are going to count, led to me losing, he quipped. I was making sure that I knew what was going on, where we were at on the court. I wasnt too familiar with the court. I hesitated going one way when I should have went the other way.
Rose even said his performance could earn the wrath of Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau upon his return to Chicago.
Hes definitely going to be on me, probably crack a couple of jokes and then, go back to being serious.
Feigning seriousness himself, Rose joked: It would really hurt if I got all the way to the end and lost, but since I got out in the first round, its not that bad.
As for Gibson, the performance of Team Chicago also consisting of former Bulls sharpshooter Steve Kerr and Chicago Sky markswoman Catherine Kraayveld of the WNBA couldnt be placed solely on his shoulders, as the entire group struggled to make the mix of shots from various ranges.
WATCH: Gibson, Kerr in shooting stars
Unfortunately for me, I was going over the rim. It was just bad, but it was fun. The experience was nerve-wracking. The crowd was just on your heels My heart was like 100 miles an hour, but it was all fun, said Gibson. After practice, I always tend to shoot a bunch of halfcourt shots, but for some reason, I couldnt hit one today.
I made one in Dallas, but I dont know, he continued. It just didnt want to go down for me for the last month and its just oh, man a downer.
Gibson also showed support for Kerr, despite the legendary shooters surprisingly disappointing performance.
When I looked at his form, it still looked good, Gibson critiqued. It is unfortunate they couldnt drop. The half court shot killed us.
Team Atlanta won the competition.
In the evenings other events, Miami Heat forward James Jones won the Foot Locker Three Point Contest and Blake Griffin of the Los Angeles Clippers won the Sprite Slam Dunk Contest.
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.