Roseis back! as Bulls beat pacers

Bulls Hand Pacers First Loss


CHICAGO – Derrick Rose came to work uncertain if he’d be capable to play.

He left along with his confidence intact and his group’s future trying very vibrant.

Luol Deng scored 23 factors, Rose added 20 and the Chicago Bulls knocked off the NBA’s last unbeaten staff with a one hundred ten-ninety four win over the Indiana Pacers on Saturday night.

Taj Gibson had 15 factors and eight rebounds for Chicago (5-three), which received its fourth straight game behind eleven-of-19 shooting from three-point vary.

“We got off to an excellent start,” Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau stated. “(The Pacers) missed some photographs that they often make. Total, I believed it was a good win. We performed very unselfishly.”

Indiana (9-1) was the NBA’s first 9-zero crew since the 2002-03 Dallas Mavericks, who began 14-zero. The 9 wins to start a season matched a franchise file.

Nursing a sore right hamstring, Rose was effective in his 30 minutes on the courtroom. He weaved around and penetrated the league’s greatest protection, which hadn’t allowed greater than ninety one factors to any opponent this yr.

Rose was injured Monday in opposition to Cleveland, and didn’t play in Chicago’s ninety six-eighty win Friday at Toronto.

“I used to be just being good concerning the state of affairs,” he mentioned about not taking part in Friday. “This is my first time having a hamstring damage. I do not understand how it would go if I had played last night time. I do not suppose I would be capable to play tonight.”

The 25-yr-previous former MVP shook off the rust after a pair of early off-balance misses. He sank a floater in the lane 3 minutes in, adopted by a 3-pointer 30 seconds later to ignite a 12-2 first-quarter run for Chicago.

“They have been giving me shots,” Rose mentioned. “I’ve bought to take those shots. I saw some go in, so I stored capturing.”

Rose cozied up on the three-point arc within the second quarter, flattening all three attempts as the Bulls took a 25-point advantage into the half. He completed 6 for 11 from beyond the arc.

“Most of Rose’s 3s were pretty properly contested contemplating his pace,” Pacers coach Frank Vogel said. “You can’t simply jam him. You must give up one thing. It’s a must to give them credit.”

Kirk Hinrich came off the bench to contribute 13 points, eight assists and 4 rebounds for the Bulls, who avenged a 97-80 loss at Indiana on Nov. 6.

The Pacers lost regardless of having all 5 starters – and two reserves – rating in double-digits.

Roy Hibbert led Indiana with 14 factors a day after posting season-highs with 24 points and eight blocks.

Chicago held Paul George to 12 points. He entered the game seventh in the NBA with 24.6 factors per recreation. George and Lance Stephenson combined to miss all seven of their three-point attempts, and the crew made just 25 p.c.

“I understand I’m going to have nights like this when pictures aren’t falling,” George mentioned. “I simply do not want to have many.”

The Pacers had been coming off their most lopsided win of the season, a 104-77 drubbing of Milwaukee.

Carlos Boozer and Chris Copeland had been ejected with 21 seconds left when a double-technical was referred to as for pushing and shoving.

Game notes

Chicago reached triple-digits for the second time this season… Deng led Chicago in scoring for the fourth time this 12 months… Pacers ahead

Danny Granger

(strained left calf) was inactive Saturday. He has but to play in a sport this season.


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NBA Predictions Week 3 Friday Game Free Picks


Free Picks and Predictions for Friday week 3 NBA Games


It’s another Friday night in the NBA and with 11 big games schedule, pick your favorite games(s) and be it lines spread, over/under or straight-pick… place your bets here through Wonder Punter and Good Luck!


Milwaukee Bucks (2-5) @ Indiana Pacers (8-0) 11/15- 7:00PM EST


Line: IND -9.0

Over/Under: 186


Don’t see the Bucks challenging the Pacers on the road. Pacers are the team to beat right now.


PICK: Indiana Pacers


Chicago Bulls (3-3) @ Toronto Raptors (4-5) 11/15- 7:00PM EST


Line: CHI -1.0

Over/Under: 190


Important road game for the Bulls to get back to winning.


PICK: Chicago Bulls


Dallas Mavericks (5-3) @ Miami Heat (5-3) 11/15- 7:30PM EST


Line: MIA -8.5

Over/Under: 207.5


Good match-up, but expect the Heat to play a full game and win.


PICK: Miami


Charlotte Bobcats (4-4) @ Cleveland Cavaliers (3-6) 11/15- 7:30PM EST


Line: CLE -6.5

Over/Under: 189.5


Bobcats playing good ball early, but like the Cavs in this one.


PICK: Cleveland Cavaliers


Philadelphia 76ers (5-4) @ Atlanta Hawks (4-4) 11/15- 7:30PM EST


Line: ATL -8.0

Over/Under: 206.0


Another surprise team playing well early, but like the Hawks in this one.


PICK: Atlanta


Portland Trailblazers (6-2) @ Boston Celtics (4-5) 11/15- 7:30PM EST


Line: POR -2.0

Over/Under: 194


Look for the Trailblazers to continue winning with a road victory at Boston.


PICK: Portland


Minnesota Timberwolves (6-3) @ Denver Nuggets (3-4) 11/15- 8:00PM EST
Line: MIN -1.5

Over/Under: 210.5


T’Wolves looking good early and will win in a close one at Denver.


PICK: Minnesota


Brooklyn Nets (2-5) @ Phoenix Suns (5-3) 11/15- 9:00PM EST


Line: BRK -1.0

Over/Under: 195


Nets are underachieving and the Suns have been playing great at home… Suns win.


PICK: Phoenix


San Antonio Spurs (8-1) @ Utah Jazz (1-8) 11/15- 9:00PM EST


Line: SAS -8.0

Over/Under: 193


Spurs are solid, Jazz are bad…. Spurs win easy.


PICK: San Antonio


Memphis Grizzles (3-5) @ Los Angeles Lakers (4-6) 11/15- 10:30PM EST


Line: MEM -3.5

Over/Under: 197.5


Not sure what Lakers team will show up… but Lakers in an upset.




Detroit Pistons (2-5) @ Sacramento Kings (2-5) 11/15- 10:30PM EST


Line: SAC -2.0

Over/Under: 197.5


Toss-up for me on the this one… but slight edge to the Kings.


PICK: Sacramento


Once again, Good luck on your favorite picks.


By Mario Martinez- Wonder Punter





NBA Power Rankings 2013



Week 3 Power Rankings for the NBA


With Week 3 of the NBA starting on Tuesday night, let’s take a look at this week’s Power Rankings for all 30 teams.


1. Indiana Pacers (7-0)- Paul George is leading the Pacers to their best start in franchise history. The team to beat right now.


2. San Antonio Spurs (6-1)- With Philadelphia, Washington, Utah and Boston coming up, they can distance themselves from the pack.


3. Oklahoma City Thunder (5-1)- With Russell Westbrook back in the fold, things are looking up.


4. Minnesota Timberwolves (5-2)- Having a healthy Kevin Love does wonders for a team.


5. Miami Heat (4-3)- A sore back is slowing down LeBron as they work out their chemistry issues.


6. Phoenix Suns (5-2)- Eric Bledsoe is leading this week’s NBA’s surprise team as they have won all four of their home games.


7. Los Angeles Clippers (4-3)- Big road win at Houston as they are still trying to find their way under coach Doc Rivers.


8. Golden State Warriors (4-3)- Warriors have four different players averaging at least 15 points per game.


9. Memphis Grizzles (3-3)- Coming off a big home win against the Warriors may jump-start them.


10. Houston Rockets (4-3)- They hit the road after dropping their last three-games.


11. Dallas Mavericks (4-3)- Monte Ellis leads the team in scoring averaging 23 points a game.


12. Chicago Bulls (2-4)- Derrick Rose and the Bulls have a showdown with the Pacers this week as they look to get back to winning and avenge an earlier loss.


13. Portland Trailblazers (4-2)- Two of their four wins came against Sacramento with more winnable games coming up against the East.


14. Philadelphia 76ers (4-3)- Went 1-3 last week after starting 3-0… is the clock getting ready to strike midnight?


15. New Orleans Pelicans (3-4) Big win at home against the Lakers on Friday night, can they repeat that performance on Tuesday night in L.A.?


16. Charlotte Bobcats (3-3)- Another early surprise team in the NBA so far.


17. Atlanta Hawks (3-3)- Ronnie Millsap is off to a big year for the Hawks so far with 20.2 points, 8.2 rebounds and 3.7 assists.


18. Detroit Pistons (2-3)- Josh Smith is fitting in nicely with his new team leading them 18.8 points per game.


19. Los Angeles Lakers (3-5)- As Kobe Bryant is still working his way back, Steve Nash is suffering from back pain once again limiting his play.


20. Cleveland Cavaliers (3-4)- Kyrie Irving is heating up having scored 25 or more in two of his last three games.


21. Brooklyn Nets (2-4)- Nets need more production from K.G who is only averaging six points per game and 6.7 rebounds a game.


22. Washington Wizards (2-4)- Still a better team them their record indicates but must finish games.


23. New York Knicks (2-4)- Can the return of J.R. Smith give them the shot in the arm they need?


24. Toronto Raptors (3-4)- Expect Rudy Gay and DeMar DeRozan to get their shooting touch back after struggling in the early season.


25. Orlando Magic (3-4)- Center Nikola Vucevic is averaging a double-double to begin the season with 15.7 points and 12.1 rebounds.


26. Boston Celtics (3-4)- The Celtics have won three straight including a win over the Miami Heat.


27. Milwaukee Bucks (2-3)- Their three losses have been by eight points or less.


28. Denver Nuggets (1-4)- Rough start under new head coach Brian Shaw as they are off to their worst start since 2004.


29. Sacramento Kings (1-5)- DeMarcus Cousins is a one-man show, but it will take more then that as they have dropped five in a row.


30. Utah Jazz (0-7)- Jazz are off to their worst start since going 0-11 in their first season in the league.




By Mario Martinez- Wonder Punter



NBA Predictions Week 2 Games Preview/Picks


Predictions for week 2 NBA Games

With almost 2 weeks of NBA action in the books, we have a full action of games on Monday to place your bets on. I will give you my straight-up picks with the betting lines. Get you favorite bets in early to secure the best odds here at Wonder Punter.


Atlanta Hawks (3-3) @ Charlotte Bobcats (3-3) 11/11- 7:00PM EST


Line: ATL -1.5

Over/Under: 196


Even match-up but will give the slight edge to the Bobcats being at home.


PICK: Charlotte Bobcats


San Antonio Spurs (6-1) @ Philadelphia (4-3)- 11/11- 7:00PM EST


Line: SAS -7.0

Over /Under: 206.5


The 76ers are surprising everyone with play to start the season, but expect the Spurs to win.


PICK: San Antonio Spurs


Memphis Grizzles (3-3) @ Indiana Pacers (7-0) 11/11- 7:00PM EST


Line: IND -7.0

Over/Under: 183.5


Good game but, with the way the Pacers are playing, look for them to win.


PICK: Indianapolis Pacers


Orlando Magic (3-4) @ Boston Celtics (3-4) 11/11- 7:30PM EST


Line: BOS -2.0

Over/Under: 188.5


Look for the Celtics to ride their big win in Miami for a back-to-back win against the Magic.


PICK: Boston Celtics


Cleveland Cavaliers (3-4) @ Chicago Bulls (2-3) 11/11- 8:00PM EST


Line: CHI -9.5

Over/Under: 185.5


Derrick Rose and the Bulls struggling to start the season but look for them to win on Monday.


PICK: Chicago Bulls


Toronto Raptors (3-4) @ Houston Rockets (4-3) 11/11- 8:00PM EST


Line: HOU -9.5

Over/Under: 200.5


After back-to-back defeats to both L.A. teams, look for the Rockets to win big against the Raptors.


PICK: Houston Rockets


Denver Nuggets (1-4) @ Utah Jazz (0-7) 11/11- 9:00PM EST


Line: DEN -1.0

Over/Under: 198.5


Two bad teams, but the Jazz have been blown out in all their losses. I’ll take my chances with the Nuggets.


PICK: Denver Nuggets


Detroit Pistons (2-3) @ Portland Trailblazers (4-2) 11/11- 9:00PM EST


Line: POR -4.5

Over/Under: 202


Portland has won two in a row, while the Pistons have lost two straight.


PICK: Portland Trailblazers


Minnesota Timberwolves (4-2) @ Los Angeles Clippers (4-3) 11/11- 10:30PM EST


Line: LAC -7.5

Over/Under: 205.5


Minnesota will be playing in the second of a back-to-back. Clips coming off a big win at Houston.


PICK: Los Angeles Clippers


Good luck with your favorite teams and picks and be sure to bet early to secure the best odds right here at Wonder Punter.



By Mario Martinez- Wonder Punter



NBA Friday Night Games- Previews/Picks


NBA Free Picks and Predictions for games of 8th November 2013

Friday night in the NBA usually means one thing… a full schedule of games at your disposal to lay your money on. With odds constantly changing, I will give you my straight-up picks on all Friday night games, but be sure to get in on the betting line early to secure the best odds. Whether you like to play the points, over/under or straight-up… you can find it right here at Wonder Punter.


Brooklyn Nets (2-2) @ Washington Wizards (1-3) 11/08- 7:00PM EST


The Wizards look to win back-to-back games as they take on the Nets.


PICK: Brooklyn Nets


Cleveland Cavaliers (2-3) @ Philadelphia 76ers (3-2) 11/08- 7:00PM EST


The Sixers have now lost two in a row after being a Cinderella team for the first three games. Cavs coming off a big win vs. Minnesota


PICK: Cleveland


Boston Celtics (1-4) @ Orlando Magic (3-2) 11/08- 7:00PM EST


The Celtics got their first win against winless Utah, but the Magic just beat a good Clipper team on Wednesday night.


PICK: Orlando


New York Knicks (1-3) @ Charlotte Bobcats (3-2) 11/08- 7:00PM EST


Trouble in the Big Apple with their beloved Knicks… Charlotte is an early surprise. I like the odds of the Bobcats winning.


PICK: Charlotte


Toronto Raptors (2-3) @ Indiana Pacers (5-0) 11/08- 7:00PM EST


Clearly, the Pacers are the team to beat right now. Impressive win against the Bulls on Wednesday night.


PICK: Indiana


Oklahoma Thunder (3-1) @ Detroit Pistons (2-2) 11/08- 7:30PM EST


With PG Russell Westbrook back, expect the Thunder to start making a run. My bet is on OKC.


PICK: Oklahoma City


Los Angeles Lakers (2-3) @ New Orleans Pelicans (2-3) 11/08- 8:00PM EST


The Los Angeles Lakers will be playing the second of a back-to-back. Have to like the odds New Orleans winning plus they blew out Memphis on the road Wednesday night.


PICK: New Orleans


Utah Jazz (0-5) @ Chicago Bulls (1-3) 11/08- 8:00PM EST


Just what the underachieving Bulls needed, a winless Jazz team to come into town. Easy pick on this one.


PICK: Chicago


Dallas Mavericks (3-2) @ Minnesota Timberwolves (3-2) 11/08- 8:00PM EST


The Mavs will look to avoid two straight road losses after dropping one to Oklahoma City Wednesday night. Should be another tough battle for both teams, but see the T’Wolves as the favorite.


PICK: Minnesota


Golden State Warriors (4-1) @ San Antonio Spurs (4-1) 11/08- 8:30PM EST


All the oddsmakers have to be going crazy with this marquee matchup of two teams who are expected to light it up. Watch for the latest betting line here on Wonder Punter, but for a straight-up pick I like the Warriors on the road.


PICK: Golden State


Denver Nuggets (0-3) @ Phoenix Suns ( 3-2) 11/08- 9:00PM EST


With Phoenix coming off a tough road loss to the San Antonio Spurs on Wednesday night, I like the odds of keeping the visiting Denver Nuggets winless on the young season.


PICK: Phoenix


Sacramento Kings (1-3) @ Portland Trailblazers (2-2) 11/08- 10:00PM EST


Portland is always tough at home… safe pick with Trailblazers.


PICK: Portland


12 full games to chose from on a Friday night. Check the latest up to the minute betting lines here at Wonder Punter and good luck with your picks!

 By Mario Martinez – WonderPunter



NBA Power Rankings- Week 1

NBA power rankings

NBA Power Rankings for Week 1 of the games


With the conclusion of Tuesday nights NBA games, let’s take a look at the Power Rankings going into the Week 2 with the Philadelphia 76ers 3-1 start shocking everyone who were expected to contend for the worst record in NBA history.


1. Indiana Pacers (4-0)- Guard Paul George is healthy and ready to lead the charge.


2. Houston Rockets (4-1)- So far the Dwight Howard and James Harden duo is working.


3. Minnesota Timberwolves (3-1)- A healthy Kevin Love (29.6 points 14.6 rebounds) can do wonders for a team.


4. Miami Heat (3-2)- LeBron James admits to maybe minor chemistry problems on the team… we shall see the effects.


5. Los Angeles Clippers (3-1)- Gave a beat down to the Rockets on Monday night.


6. San Antonio Spurs (3-1)- Welcome back Tim Duncan and a resurgent Manu Ginoboli.


7. Golden State Warriors (3-1)- It’s the Stephen Curry 3-point show on pace for 437 triples!


8. Dallas Mavericks (3-1)- Dirk Nowitski and Monte Ellis getting it done so far.


9. Oklahoma Thunder (2-1)- With PG Russell Westbrook back sooner then expected, expect them to start climbing up the rankings.


10. Philadelphia 76ers (3-1)- They were ranked last to start the season, but thanks to some quality wins, they deserve a Top 10 ranking for now.


11. Brooklyn Nets (2-2)- They need a Miami like performance every night if they want to contend for top billing in the East.


12. Chicago Bulls (1-2)- Derrick Rose will continue to improve but the Bulls need more scoring.


13. Memphis Grizzles (2-2)- Both road losses were on the road to San Antonio and Dallas.


14. Phoenix Suns (3-1)- Eric Bledsoe is shinning bright in the desert sun.


15. Portland Trailblazers (2-2)- Big home win against the Spurs with Tim Duncan back in the lineup, but spanked at home by the Rockets.


16. Detroit Pistons (2-2)- Brandon Jennings is back from his injury early and ready to lead.


17. Orlando Magic (2-2)- Young and ready to play with rookie Victor Oladipo.


18. Cleveland Cavaliers (2-2)- Did we mention Andrew Bynum is playing this year?


19. Los Angeles Lakers (2-3)- Still young, still athletic, still Kobe-less. When Kobe, when? Xavier Henry looking great early.


20. Toronto Raptors (2-2)- It’s Rudy Gay’s team now.


21. Charlotte Bobcats (2-2)- Can Al Jefferson shake off his ankle problems?


22. Atlanta Hawks (2-2)- Safe to say the Hawks miss Josh Smith. PG Jeff Teague has been a bright spot.


23. New York Knicks (1-3)- The Knicks are hearing the boos already at home after Bobcats beat them.


24. Milwaukee Bucks (1-2)- Center Zaza Pachulia is averaging 13 points and 7.7 boards a game so far.


25. New Orleans Pelicans (1-3)- Second-year center Anthony Davis the lone bright spot with averages of 23.7 points, 12 rebounds and four blocks his first week.


26. Washington Wizards (0-3)- And to think everybody was talking a playoff team before the season. It’s early but win one first.


27. Sacramento Kings (1-3)- DeMarcus Cousins needs help and G Isaiah Thomas may be the answer averaging 19 points and 4.7 assists.


28.Denver Nuggets (0-3)- Not what we expected from a team that made the playoffs last year.


29. Utah Jazz (0-4)- Desperately need a point guard.


30. Boston Celtics (0-4)- Due to play the winless Jazz Wednesday night. 



Rose tallies winner vs. Knicks

Rose Lifts Bulls Previous Knicks

CHICAGO – Neglect concerning the neck stiffness that almost postponed Derrick Rose’s homecoming. Neglect about all these missed shots, too.

Rose made the one play that mattered Thursday night time, and it was identical to previous instances for the Chicago Bulls.

Rose related on a baseline floater with 5.7 seconds left to carry Chicago to an eighty two-eighty one victory over the New York Knicks in his first residence sport since he injured his left knee 18 months in the past.

“That is what builds your résumé,” Rose stated. “Leaves a mark on your legacy.”

The 2011 NBA MVP had 18 points on 7-of-23 shooting and dedicated 4 turnovers. However there was little question who was getting the ball after Tyson Chandler went 1-for-2 on the line to present New York an eighty one-eighty lead with 10.eight seconds remaining.

Rose, who was a recreation-time determination for Chicago’s dwelling opener on account of an achy neck, got the ball on the wing, drove to the baseline and lofted a nicely-positioned floater over the 7-foot Chandler and Raymond Felton for the go-ahead basket, drawing a standing ovation from the delirious crowd of 22,022.

“I was right there. He simply made a giant-time play,” Chandler said. “I don’t know if he noticed the basket to be honest with you.”

New York had one final likelihood however Carmelo Anthony missed a long jumper. Anthony then stood along with his palms on his hips as the Bulls celebrated.

“I acquired the look I needed,” Anthony stated.

Chicago had simply two field targets within the ultimate period – both by Rose – and committed six turnovers within the last 12 minutes. But it still managed to equal a franchise record with its sixth consecutive win in dwelling openers.

Luol Deng had 17 factors and Carlos Boozer completed with 14 as the Bulls beat the Knicks for the sixth straight time.

“It’s tough once you go right into a game and you don’t know who you have got,” coach Tom Thibodeau mentioned. “That’s all a part of it. It’s the start of the season. As long as we are putting everything into each day and strive for improvement, it will work out.”

New York coach Mike Woodson opted for an even bigger look towards Chicago, inserting 7-foot Andrea Bargnani into the beginning lineup and using guard Pablo Prigioni as a reserve. However the Bulls nonetheless enjoyed a forty six-24 advantage in points in the paint and a 48-forty two rebounding edge, led by Joakim Noah’s 15 boards.

“We competed tonight. It says lots for our membership,” Woodson mentioned. “Now I simply must do a better job getting us by down the stretch.”

Amar’e Stoudemire made his season debut for the Knicks and had five factors in eleven minutes. The facility ahead, who turns 31 on Nov. 16, is coming off minor knee surgical procedure over the summer and looked as if the years of well being problems had robbed him of much of his athleticism.

“More than happy with how I felt tonight, so far as my physique,” he stated. “Simply going to proceed to maintain building and preserve getting higher.”

New York trailed 76-66 with 7:53 remaining, but rookie Tim Hardaway Jr. made a 3-pointer to spark a 12-zero run for the Knicks. Felton related from lengthy vary, Iman Shumpert had a dunk and Anthony closed out the spurt with a turnaround jumper that put New York in entrance with 4:10 remaining.

The last a part of the sport largely consisted of turnovers and missed photographs, but Chicago managed to outlive behind Rose.

“He showed lots of toughness,” Thibodeau mentioned. “It was a battle early on in the recreation. He discovered his way at the start of the third, that got him a little carry.”

Jimmy Butler finished with eleven factors and 10 rebounds for Chicago, which lost 107-95 at NBA champion Miami in its season opener on Tuesday evening.

Anthony led New York with 22 points on eight-of-24 shooting. Chandler had 19 rebounds, but the Knicks were unable to open the season with consecutive victories on consecutive nights. They have been coming off a ninety-83 victory against Milwaukee on Wednesday.

Wearing strips of black tape on both facet of his achy neck, Rose acquired a thunderous ovation from the sellout crowd when he was the final participant launched in the course of the pregame festivities. He showed no outward emotion as he ran out of the tunnel with fans waving glowing purple sticks in celebration of the return of the Chicago native.

After Rose acquired on the court docket, chants of “M-V-P! M-V-P!” rang out from the seats at the United Center.

It was Rose’s first actual game on the Bulls’ longtime house since he tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his knee in the first recreation of the 2012 playoffs in opposition to Philadelphia. What followed was a protracted and arduous rehabilitation process that raised questions on Rose’s toughness when he was unable to return last season.

That entire “Will he or won’t he play” episode was long forgotten when he took the courtroom towards the Knicks, taking a fast moment to blow a kiss toward the posh packing containers earlier than tipoff.

The speedy level guard was just 2-for-11 from the sector within the first half, but Deng had 12 points to assist Chicago to a forty three-38 lead at the break.

“I am not going to continue lacking shots that I’m missing,” Rose said, pointing to what he thinks will probably be even higher days forward. “I work too exhausting.”

Recreation notes

Chicago improved to 27-21 in house openers, together with a 12-8 report on the United Center… Hardaway provided a spark as a reserve, finishing with 10 factors.

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NBA Game Recap- Heat Whip Bulls


NBA Game Recap- Heat Whip Bulls


Chicago Bulls- 95

Miami Heat- 107


Once the Miami Heat received their second-straight championship rings and raised the banner, they knew it was time to get down to business once again to kick off the start of the 2013-14 NBA season, and that they did as they sent a message to the team that is expected to dethrone them… the Chicago Bulls.


The Heat shook off an early ‘ring ceremony hangover’ and turned what was expected to be a tight game all night into a Miami blowout win over the Bulls 107-95.


The final score was closer then it should have been with the Heat leading by as much as 25-points in the second half, but a late Bulls charge kept things somewhat interesting.


You never know what to expect when you’re trying to keep the main thing the main thing, and that’s the game.” Heat coach Eric Spoelstra said. “But you can’t deny the emotions and what a special moment it was for everybody in the organization because we know how difficult that was and how harrowing that was last season. So it was great to actually get the win after that to cap off a very good night for the Miami Heat.”


LeBron James finished the night with 17 points, eight assists and six rebounds.


Chicago’s Derrick Rose was also the story of the night after missing all of last season recovering from a serious knee injury in April 2012. He finished with 12 points in 34 minutes. Carlos Boozer was the big scorer of the night for the Bulls with 31 points and seven boards.


Chicago fought back from a 25-point deficit and got the score back to as close as eight points but Miami’s Shane Battier hit a big three and ended any comeback from there.


We’re not trying to pull close. There were a lot of corrections that we have to make,” Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau said. “It always comes back to the same thing—our defense and our rebounding. And if we could have taken better care of the ball early on, we would have been in position to win down the stretch.”


Rose ended the night 4 for 15 for the Bulls.


Said Rose, “If anything, I’m disappointed in the loss. My performance, I can easily change that by making shots and keep down the turnovers.”


Miami had seven players in double-figures.


It’s a team game,” James said. “That’s what this team is put together for.”


Including last year’s playoffs, Miami has now beaten the Bulls five straight games.

For more NCAA NBA MLB NFL, Scores, Reviews, Previews, and Picks & Predictions,  feel free to check out our sections from the tabs on top of the page where I will be updating on a daily basis

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By Mario Martinez – WonderPunter

The NEW BetOnline


LeBron, Heat on Bulls: We don’t like them

MIAMI – With the way the Miami Heat’s assistant coaches, armed with handheld football pads, mauled LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh as they drove into the lane on the end of Monday’s observe, one may suppose the star trio have been truly working backs getting ready for an enormous sport.

As an alternative, the Warmth have been just preparing for a bodily battle on the courtroom in Tuesday’s season opener against the Chicago Bulls. After the Heat workers introduced out the football pads to follow for the first time this preseason, the message is clear.

LeBron James and Joakim NoahLeBron James and the Miami Heat could have much more than Joakim Noah to deal with within the season opener. Derrick Rose, Kirk Hinrich and Luol Deng are again in the fold for the Bulls after missing the Japanese Conference finals last season.

“We do not like them, they don’t like us,” James stated of the Bulls after the drill. “It’s not remarkable. Everyone knows how it’s.”

Was it a coincidence that they busted out the football gear before facing Tom Thibodeau’s famed defense in Chicago?

“No, under no circumstances,” Bosh said after the 20-minute drill. “It is all deliberate. We know they’re big, bodily and we all know we now have to finish.”

The Heat expect the Bulls to be further motivated Tuesday, and never just because it marks level guard Derrick Rose’s first sport again since struggling a torn ACL in April 2012. The Heat may also be raising their 2012-thirteen championship banner and getting their rings earlier than the sport, and it is not lost them that they ended the Bulls’ season in the Jap Conference semifinals just 5 months ago.

“It don’t matter who it is,” James said of the opponent for the opener. “However we like the truth that it’s the Bulls.”

Not that the Bulls will be watching. As an alternative, they will be within the locker room, coach Tom Thibodeau said Monday.

“That is their ceremony, not ours,” Rose stated. “If we have been getting our rings there can be a bit of little bit of a distraction, however for us we know that we bought to stay targeted, come together as a team, and really take their first hit because they’re definitely going to be on charge.”

The Bulls have been right here earlier than. After the Warmth gained the title in 2006, the Bulls have been in Miami for opening evening and the banner elevating ceremony. Chicago blasted Miami 108-sixty six. Only Udonis Haslem and Wade remain from that group, whereas Luol Deng and Kirk Hinrich are the one Bulls who were around then.

JamesWe do not like them, they do not like us. It isn’t remarkable. Everyone knows how it is.

- LeBron James, on Miami’s opener vs. the Chicago Bulls

The Warmth were in the Bulls’ shoes just two years in the past. After losing to the Dallas Mavericks in the 2011 Finals, the Warmth opened the season in Dallas after the lockout ended and obtained revenge by beating the Mavs by double digits.

“We wished to embarrass [the Mavericks] on their residence ground,” Bosh stated. “We wanted to defecate on their night time and we all know [the Bulls] need to do this to us. They need to spoil what we have going and we’re aware of that. Now we have to hit first.”

The Bulls, who were the one NBA crew with an eight-zero preseason document, are again expected to challenge the Warmth for the Eastern Conference crown this season. With Rose, Hinrich and Deng anticipated to be again in the fold after being sidelined in the Japanese Conference semifinals, the Bulls shall be as healthy as they’ve been in over a year.

After battling groin soreness during the preseason, Bulls center Joakim Noah has declared himself “100 percent” for Tuesday’s season opener.

“We’ve a special little thing with these guys,” Bosh stated. “The fans want to see it. We want to play them and so they want us, too. So it’ll be good.”

Wade, who grew up in Chicago, agreed there’s exhausting feelings between the two organizations with Miami having ended the Bulls’ season twice in the last three years.

“We’re each trying to do something, attempting to win [a championship],” Wade said. “You are going to run into each other alongside the best way and you are going to dislike one another. They wish to beat us as badly as we want to beat them.”

Wade expects the competition within the East, starting with the Bulls, to be even more durable this season.

“Our aim right here is to not get bored,” Wade mentioned. “Do not get uninterested in making an attempt to be great. Now we have to understand that we’re champions and we will get each different staff’s finest shot.”

Greg Oden, who signed with the Heat as a free agent through the offseason and hasn’t performed a regular-season sport in more than 4 years, remains to be everyday, coach Erik Spoelstra mentioned.

Nick Friedell of contributed to this report.
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NBA Prediction Game Preview & Pick – Bulls vs. Heat


NBA Prediction Game Preview & Pick – Bulls vs. Heat


Chicago Bulls @ Miami Heat 10/29- 8:00PM EST


The Miami Heat may be the team getting their rings on opening night of the NBA, but all eyes will be on the return of Chicago’s point guard Derrick Rose who missed all of last season rehabbing a knee injury as he looks to lead his Bulls to a championship year.


Our No. 1 goal is winning a title,” said Rose, the 2011 MVP who has averaged 21.0 points and 6.8 assists in four NBA seasons. “We’re not worried about anything else. We’re not worried about what people say about us or what’s going on on the outside. We’re just worried about the Bulls and how good we get everyday.”


Chicago, after going 8-0 in the pre-season feels they are geared to make a run at an NBA title and dethrone the Heat who are looking for a ‘three-peat.’


If anything, we accomplished what we wanted to accomplish, which was to go out there and try to win every game,” Rose said. “We know we have important games coming up. We’re just trying to get prepared for that.”


Without Rose last year, the Bulls fell to Miami in five-games scoring an average of only 82.0 points a game while giving up 100.3 per game.


For the Miami Heat, once they receive their rings, Lebron James and the Heat expect all business the rest of the way as they seek their third straight NBA title.


After we get our rings, that’s last year,” said James. “We did some special things last year and this is an opportunity for us to look back at it one more time, but I definitely won’t lose sight of what’s in front of me.”


The Los Angeles Lakers of 2000-02 were the last team to win three consecutive championships.


It would mean everything, man,” James said. “First of all, it means that I’m doing my part and I’m helping our team get better. It would mean everything to our team. That’s what we’re here for. We work our tails off every day. If it can pay off with another Finals appearance, we’d represent the Eastern Conference the best way we can.”


Miami won 27-straight games last season challenging the all-time record of 33 straight set by the 1972-73 Los Angeles Lakers finishing with a 66-16 record.


When you put this kind of talent together, there’s always people on the outside trying to figure out ways why it shouldn’t work,” said Dwayne Wade. “When you’re on the inside and can put it together and show them that it can work, it’s a great feeling.


For us to be able to go to the Finals three straight times and hopefully go again, what more can you ask for?”


The Bulls and Heat split their four regular-games last year.


Most teams suffer a ‘ring ceremony’ hangover, and I expect the Bulls to come out with a sense of urgency to prove to the Heat they mean business in 2013-14.


PICK: Chicago Bulls

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Bulls VP: No limitations for ‘fearless’ Rose

Chicago Bulls vice chairman John Paxson mentioned Thursday that Derrick Rose has looked “fearless” through the preseason and that the staff has no plans to restrict his minutes or games performed in his first season back from knee surgical procedure.

“We have turned the web page,” Paxson mentioned on “The Waddle & Silvy Present” on ESPN Chicago 1000. “Unless he would give you one thing that would concern us, however we have no considerations right now. You look at his preseason, and I think [coach] Tom [Thibodeau] has performed a really nice job of kind of amping up his minutes. He is played six games. In reality he’s solely averaging about 27 minutes a sport in this preseason, and he has seemed terrific. Proper now there is no such thing as a reason to suppose that there shall be any restrictions, and we’re not anticipating that at all.”

Derrick Rose

Derrick Rose is averaging 27.three factors in his past three preseason games.

Rose missed the 2012-13 season following knee surgery in Could 2012. There was speculation that the Bulls may limit Rose, maybe even sit him in the second sport of back-to-backs at the least early within the season, however Paxson stated his star player expects to be on the courtroom.

“Look, Derrick needs to play. He’s been out for a complete yr,” Paxson stated. “He is exhibiting no signs that would make us think alongside those lines. Tom has a good gauge of these things, and we’re all assured that we’re beyond that. He’s obtained to push himself. Let’s face it, he spent plenty of time and effort into rehabbing this knee… He’s not coming to us to put any limitations on him. As an organization we do not want him taking part in forty eight minutes an evening – that is not going to happen, of course – but in that 35- to 38-minute range, that’s what he was going to do anyway, and I don’t see that altering.”

Rose has regarded sharp in the preseason, averaging 19.7 factors for the 6-zero Bulls. He has ramped up his scoring of late, averaging 27.3 points in his past three video games, together with 26 in a victory in opposition to the Oklahoma Metropolis Thunder on Wednesday. And he has proven no hesitation in driving to the basket, as evidenced by his taking pictures no less than 10 free throws in 5 of his six video games.

“He has been fearless,” Paxson mentioned. “The best way he has attacked the basket, his means preinjury to change velocity in actual tight spaces like he confirmed [against the Thunder on Wednesday] with some of those crossovers and sidesteps previous defenders, those are issues that he had previous to the harm, and he has obviously proven that and extra here in the preseason. The fact that he feels the arrogance on this knee which you can simply see out there on the ground, that is an excellent sign for him.

“He is such a terrific younger man and he cares a lot concerning the sport and what he means to the game, to his teammates, to see him play with this sort of confidence is nice, and we’re all really happy for him. That is the best part about it, to see him feeling good about himself.”

After hitting three 3-pointers down the stretch to rally the Bulls past the Thunder, Rose mentioned he has a number of confidence in his sport.

“It’s a new beginning,” Rose said Wednesday. “I feel I’m going to be a unique participant. My confidence has grown as a participant, and I am on the workforce with a bunch of guys that’s taking this recreation severe like I’m.”

Rose, who played a preseason-excessive 35 minutes on Wednesday, has seen his minutes ramped up with each game by Thibodeau and has averaged 26.3 in the six exhibition video games.

Paxson said he’s glad to see that the unscripted a part of Rose’s return has been a hit.

“The factor I suppose in my mind that I was apprehensive about and thought all of us may see is just a bit little bit of the concern of going via the reacting on the ground, because let’s face it, up until coaching camp the whole lot he had carried out in his rehabilitation was just about scripted,” Paxson said. “You’re working, you are lifting, you are rehabbing your knee. The exercises are scripted. You get in a game and you get into practice, and unexpectedly that’s not scripted, that’s reacting and using your thoughts and your bodily items.”
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Rose: Pacers great, but Heat only true rival

CHICAGO – Derrick Rose believes the Bulls have just one important rival – and it is the Miami Warmth, not the Indiana Pacers.

Rose made his emotions identified earlier than Friday evening’s preseason contest against the Pacers.

While being respectful relating to Indiana’s latest success, Rose acknowledged that he believed any rivalry with the Pacers is a factor of the past.

“Individuals say that it is a rivalry, but I do not actually see it,” Rose stated earlier than scoring 32 points in the staff’s 103-ninety eight win towards the Pacers. “I say the team that’s extra like a rivalry is when Darren Collison was on the crew. That one was extra like a rivalry, however this crew is a great team. They’ve already proven themselves last 12 months by making it to the Jap Conference finals.

“If anything, by most likely in a yr or two, it might turn out to be a rival. But proper now, individuals say it is a rival… I just don’t see it right now.”

Rose and the Bulls defeated the Pacers within the first spherical of the playoffs in 2011.

Asked what made the rivalry with the Collison-led Pacers completely different, Rose responded this manner:

“I think it was more like that rivalry feeling where we knew, we thought that they have been going to have that very same crew for a protracted period of time,” Rose said. “Then they end up going other ways, selecting up totally different guys, and I feel this team, I believe within the next 12 months or two, if both groups have the identical groups, then that’s when it might grow to be a rivalry.”

Requested particularly if he felt the Heat have been the Bulls’ biggest rival, Rose acknowledged that to be the case.

“In order for you say [that], yeah,” he stated. “For certain, Miami.”

For his or her part, the Pacers have repeatedly talked in regards to the rivalry they really feel they’ve developed with the Bulls over the years.

“I feel Chicago will at all times be a rival,” Pacers forward Danny Granger mentioned recently. “While you go to the United Heart, it’s loopy. They’ve a big dwelling-court benefit there. They’ve a huge following, not only domestically in Chicago however nationally as effectively, and I feel they’re going to always be a rival to us. We’re actually close, so a number of occasions there’s loads of Bulls fans right here and vice versa. I believe as long as we’re within the division, we will be rivals.”

Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau was complimentary of Indiana when asked a couple of potential rivalry with the Pacers.

“We’re all battling for a similar factor,” he stated. “They’re deep, they’re gifted, so we know how good they’re. They’ve measurement, quickness, toughness, they play collectively, they play smart, they’re well-coached. They’re one of many elite teams in the East for positive.”

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Nick Friedell is the Chicago Bulls beat reporter for ESPN Chicago. Friedell is a graduate of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University and joined for its launch in April 2009.

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Rose has Injured knee, doesnt make the preseason game

Chicago Bulls star point guard Derrick Rose didn’t play in Saturday’s preseason game in opposition to the Washington Wizards due to soreness in his surgically repaired left knee.

Rose developed the soreness during Friday’s practice. The Bulls stated the decision to hold him out of the sport, which was played in Rio de Janeiro, was precautionary.

Derrick Rose

Derrick Rose appeared in every of Chicago’s first two preseason games, playing 20 minutes in the opener and 23 minutes within the second contest.

“We wanted to see the place he was right this moment, but he wasn’t as well as we might have appreciated,” coach Tom Thibodeau said. “He nonetheless had the soreness. So we anticipated giving him day off. We view our training camp as your entire month. So if he needs a day, or a couple of days, we’ll do this.”

Kirk Hinrich began at point guard in Rose’s absence and completed with eight points and three assists in the Bulls’ eighty three-81 win.

“It is extra, I believe, just a precaution. He is coming off a extremely large injury. We’re not too anxious,” Hinrich said. “He is been good all camp, and I’m assuming everyone is expecting him to be prepared.

“Coming back from an enormous injury like that, you don’t wish to push it too laborious, too quick.”

Rose missed all of final season after tearing the ACL in his left knee through the playoffs in April 2012. The former NBA MVP appeared in every of Chicago’s first two preseason games this month, scoring 13 factors while playing not less than 20 minutes in each contest.

Bulls government vice president John Paxson said Saturday that Rose’s soreness was not surprising and that the staff does not plan to have the three-time All-Star undergo an MRI.

“We never anticipated a straight line,” Paxson said, in line with the Chicago Tribune. “He had a bit of soreness and we are being ultraconservative as a result of it’s the third sport of preseason.

“We all know there’s nothing structurally to be fearful about. It’s just a little soreness. If it was another participant, we’d do the identical thing.”

The NBA star’s absence disenchanted a sellout crowd of 13,635 on the HSBC Arena in Rio – the gymnastics venue for the 2016 Olympics – the place the top ticket value for the preseason sport was 2,000 Brazilian reals ($915).

Followers began chanting late within the recreation “Rose, Rose,” hoping to see him take the floor, but Thibodeau plans on playing it safe together with his star level guard.

“In training camp when guys get sore, you often relaxation them,” he mentioned. “You might be at all times involved with injuries or soreness. We knew coming into the season he is coming off a serious damage.”

Thibodeau was unsure whether Rose would play in the Bulls’ subsequent recreation, at residence Wednesday against the Pistons.

“We’re undecided if he plays on Wednesday,” the coach said. “Right now it’s soreness, so we will just go daily.”

Chicago’s Joakim Noah also missed the sport, sitting out with a groin injury.

“Over the course of a season you are at all times going to have different issues by way of well being,” Thibodeau said. “So we count on when someone is out, the next man will step up and get the job achieved. We had a number of guys try this last year and we expect the identical subsequent 12 months.”

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Rose says leg ‘feels great’ day after return

ST. LOUIS – A day after taking part in his first professional recreation in over 17 months, Chicago Bulls star guard Derrick Rose was joyful with his efficiency in Saturday evening’s preseason win over the Indiana Pacers.

“It feels great,” Rose said earlier than Sunday’s apply. “I’m not sore or anything. My leg’s good. Just attempting to stay centered and making an attempt to take it at some point at a time.”

One of the best news of all for the Bulls is that Rose reported no soreness in his left knee after scoring 13 factors in 20 minutes on Saturday evening.

“No soreness in any respect,” Rose mentioned. “After the sport it felt like I hadn’t even played so I assume that is a good sign.”

Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau was happy with what he noticed from Rose as effectively. The veteran coach understands that the former MVP nonetheless has to shake off some rust, however he was happy with how Rose responded after his first contest.

“We’ll see when he gets out [to practice] – up to now, so good,” Thibodeau mentioned. “I believed he played properly [Saturday] and we have been seeing it in observe so it was good to see it in a sport. I thought he was real aggressive. As the game went on he got stronger and stronger.”

Both Thibodeau and Rose have been concerned with how Rose would work his means again into sport form but that doesn’t seem like an issue. Thibodeau joked on Saturday that Rose was upset when he was taken out with 7:07 left in the third quarter towards the Pacers. Thibodeau doesn’t anticipate to see any adjustments in his schedule for Rose because the Bulls get set to face the Memphis Grizzlies on Monday night time.

“The big factor was looking at his wind,” Thibodeau mentioned. “He felt actually good, he needed to play extra, which is nice. We’re just going to take it day-to-day, and if he needs some relaxation we’ll give him extra rest. It’s just step by step, don’t skip and steps. That is all we want him to do.”

Rose said he hadn’t talked to many people since making his lengthy-awaited return Saturday.

“I simply modified my number so it was like family and friends hit me up,” he mentioned. “However other than that I have never read anything, noticed anything, not less than not but.”

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Rose back at the Bulls, scores thirteen in twenty minutes

INDIANAPOLIS – Chicago Bulls star level guard Derrick Rose returned to the court docket Saturday night time after lacking the previous 17 months while recovering from knee surgery, scoring 13 points in 20 minutes in an 82-76 victory in opposition to the Indiana Pacers in both teams’ preseason opener.

Rose, the 2010-11 league MVP, seemed comfy on the ground and pleased to be back with his teammates as he displayed his trademark pace at numerous points throughout the game, together with a breakaway dunk early within the third quarter.

“I have been making ready myself for this second for a yr and a half now,” Rose said after the game. “So just getting ready for this and continue to go out there and understand how blessed I am to be stepping again on the courtroom again, especially with these guys that devoted their whole summer season to trying to make this workforce higher. I am lucky to be on this workforce and blessed to be on this group and taking part in for Thibs [coach Tom Thibodeau] and the coaching workers.”

The feeling is mutual inside the Bulls organization. Thibodeau was happy to see Rose again on the ground and was happy with the 25-12 months-old’s effort.

“It was good to have him back for sure,” Thibodeau mentioned. “I believe you see how he makes the game simpler for everybody. And the speed with which he plays, you bought to get accustomed to that, too. His teammates must get used to it again. He has to get used to it. But general I believed he performed very, very effectively. Some rust, however that is to be anticipated. However you might see as each minute went by he acquired increasingly comfy, and he ran the group great.”

Rose acknowledged throughout the week that he thought he’d have some rust, and he was right. He turned over the ball 4 times and seemed a little bit out of sync at times.

The good news for the Bulls is that Rose showed no hesitation while going to the rim. He attacked the basket the identical means he did before the damage and did not again down when Pacers heart Roy Hibbert stood in entrance.

“We’ve been seeing it in follow,” Thibodeau stated of Rose’s aggressive play. “He’s hit the floor, he is aggressive, that’s the best way he performed earlier than the damage and he is back to enjoying like that, and for him that’s his sport. The speed, the quickness, but the energy to associate with it. That’s what makes him so particular and distinctive. There is no one like him.”

[+] EnlargeDerrick Rose Ron Hoskins/NBAE/Getty PhotosDerrick Rose was back on the courtroom for the Bulls on Saturday night, displaying no hesitation whereas going to the rim against the Pacers.

The opposition was impressed, as nicely.

“Usual Derrick Rose,” Pacers coach Frank Vogel stated. “He looked great.”

Rose’s return has been a hot subject around the league for months, and the power in Bankers Life Fieldhouse was excessive from the outset. Many followers cheered loudly when he was launched within the starting lineup, and the crowd erupted when he touched the ball for the primary time. Rose left the sport with 7:07 remaining in the third quarter and iced each knees while sitting on the top of the floor with some of his teammates.

Rose admitted that he was relieved to get his first game out of the way in which, however he wasn’t shocked by his exhausting-nosed play. He has mentioned repeatedly over the past two weeks that he’s no longer fascinated by the way in which his knee is feeling.

“I knew that I was going to play the identical means [I did before the harm],” he stated. “Play aggressive, make them cease me, but get out on the open courtroom like we’ve been taking part in in practice.”

A noticeable distinction in Rose’s in-game routine is his new stretching regimen. After exiting the sport in the first quarter, he used a softball and then a smaller ball beneath his leg to keep it unfastened while he sat on the floor.

Rose even surprised the assembled media when he said he’s gained five inches on his vertical leap because the knee surgery in Might 2012.

“I think I bounce increased,” he said. “I believe coming into the league I used to be at 37 [inches for a vertical jump] and they tested my vertical at [a training facility] I’m in all probability at like a forty two, so I am jumping a little bit larger.”

Rose tore the ACL in his left knee within the first game of the Jap Convention playoffs in April 2012.



‘More confident’ Rose focused on NBA title

DEERFIELD, Ailing. – Chicago Bulls star Derrick Rose is “way more assured” as he returns to the court for the primary time in 18 months following knee surgery, and he said his essential focus is main his crew to an NBA title.

“The thing that drives me is simply winning the championship,” Rose said Friday at Bulls media day. “That is the one factor on my résumé that I am missing. This can be a nice time to do it where everyone is watching. It’s the biggest stage you could possibly probably play on. My teammates are getting ready themselves for a giant year, and I am too. It must be a crazy, magical year the place I feel there’s going to be a lot of people watching. It must be exciting to the Bulls fans.”

Rose will make his return to the court at Indiana on Oct. 5 in the Bulls’ preseason opener, his first NBA recreation action in nearly 18 months.

He says to not anticipate to see one thing totally different than the fearless slashing type that gained him the NBA MVP award in 2011.

“I think I’m going to play the same means,” Rose stated. “I feel the only factor that modified in my sport is my confidence level. I think I’m way more assured in my craft, in my recreation. I labored out a complete 12 months training my physique. Going on the market and displaying people who I’m the identical player however a more efficient participant, that is what I’m making an attempt to show.”

RoseI feel I’ll play the same method. I believe the only factor that changed in my game is my confidence level. I think I am far more confident in my craft, in my game. I labored out a whole yr training my physique. Going out there and exhibiting people who I’m the identical player however a extra efficient player, that is what I’m making an attempt to show.

- Derrick Rose

The top-seeded Bulls’ playoff hopes had been dashed on April 28, 2012, when Rose tore his ACL in the opening game of the Jap Convention quarterfinals against the Philadelphia 76ers. Rose said Friday he has watched footage of him getting injured 20-30 instances.

“I attempt to get it out of my mind as rapidly as doable because it is previously,” Rose stated. “At the moment, I did not train my body the best way I practice it now. I do know that I improved each space on my physique, so I ought to be more balanced than previously.”

Rose grew to become a divisive figure in Chicago, his hometown, after selecting to sit out final season regardless of being cleared to play late in the season. He by no means declared himself out, practicing with the team throughout its playoff run and appearing as if he may return at any time. But Rose said one concern was enough to maintain him out for the entire season.

“I by no means felt like I might take on a double-group,” Rose stated. “I knew that I could get past one person, but within the playoffs, you actually should suppose the sport and people are going to throw completely different strategies and defenses at you virtually every recreation.

“I knew I wasn’t able to tackle the double-crew in the playoffs, so I had to make the choice that I’m not coming again.”

Rose stated he has no regrets with how his rehab was dealt with last season and by no means obtained caught up within the criticism.

“Every part occurred for a motive, and I am simply pleased to be previous it,” he stated. “You hear numerous the criticism, you hear stuff, my mates bring stuff to me, but there’s nothing you are able to do about it. All people is free to voice their very own opinion. I am unable to stop individuals from saying stuff. All I can do is simply proceed to work laborious and just try to compete as a player and just to raised myself as a player.”

The Bulls have received the NBA’s No. 1 seed the past two seasons they’ve had Rose on the court, and the expectations are excessive for a staff that won 45 video games and a primary-spherical playoff collection without him last season.

“I think we have got the best pieces,” Rose mentioned. “All people that is coming in, it seems like they have their head on right. You’ve got guys that’s been right here the entire summer season, simply bettering their games, making an attempt to make the group better. That’s all you’ll be able to ask for while you’re dealing with grown males.

“Hearing from my teammates whereas I was in L.A., it pushed me to grow to be a greater participant. It pushed me onerous in workouts as a result of I didn’t need to come into camp out of shape or out of condition after they had been on top of their stuff. I’m blissful to be right here and seeing that everybody is basically working hard.”


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TNT’s Steve Kerr thinks the Heat won’t three-peat, picks Bulls to come out of the East

Will Steve Kerr wind up needing to hide from his 2014 title prediction? (Lee Celano/Getty Photos)

Barring a catastrophic harm or another unexpected growth between now and Oct. 30, the Miami Warmth will enter the common season as the betting favourite to capture the 2013-14 NBA championship; for the time being, they’re going off at a shade underneath 2-to-1, in response to Bovada, significantly outpacing the positioning’s No. 2 guess, the Oklahoma City Thunder (6-to-1). That is pretty reasonable — after all, the Heat have won the Eastern Conference three years in a row and won the last two NBA championships, and the team employs LeBron James, who is both the best basketball participant on the earth and in the prime of his profession.

Beyond that, Miami additionally features Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh, who rank as arguably the league’s greatest pair of supplemental offensive options and may provide sport-altering defensive play when wholesome and engaged. The Heat additionally return every key contributor to last 12 months’s title run save for Mike Miller, whom they amnestied again in July and who later signed with the Memphis Grizzlies. (Pat Riley responded by adding Greg Oden and Michael Beasley to select up Miller’s “myriad accidents” and “enjoyable coiffure” slack.) Whereas there are not any lead-pipe locks in the NBA, you would be laborious-pressed to find too many of us who’d look askance at selecting the Heat to go back-to-back-to-back.

Count Steve Kerr among the aspect-eye squadron, though. The previous 15-12 months skilled sharpshooter and Phoenix Suns basic supervisor, and current TNT basketball analyst, has gone on the record to foretell that the Warmth won’t solely fail to three-peat, however will lose their Eastern crown, too, based on Ben Boltch of the Los Angeles Instances:

Nobody has received back-to-again-to-back titles because the Lakers in 2000-02 and no person has been to 4 consecutive NBA Finals because the Boston Celtics in 1984-87.

“There’s a purpose these teams do not do it,” TNT analyst Steve Kerr stated. “Emotionally, it’s just exhausting to keep doing it yr after yr, notably when you need to take care of everything Miami has to cope with every day, simply the fixed critiquing and scrutiny on the workforce, and then you factor within the injuries with Wade and Bosh and their well being. I don’t assume Miami will get out of the East this yr.”

Kerr is selecting the Bulls to unseat the Heat.

Well, then.

You’d suspect that Kerr’s Bulls pick leans closely on the anticipated full-throttle return of Derrick Rose to All-NBA-level play after missing all the 2012-13 season rehabilitating from a torn left ACL. To be sure, including an elite point guard (plus savvy playmaking swingman Mike Dunleavy, plucked neatly at the start of free agency) ought to help the Bulls enhance from one of many league’s worst offenses (24th of 30 NBA groups in factors scored per possession final season) again towards the top of the pops (No. 5 in offensive effectivity in 2011-12, No. 12 in Rose’s MVP 2010-eleven season).

As’s John Schuhmann noted, though, the Bulls also allowed five more points per one hundred possessions final season than they did the yr earlier than, thanks partly to the departures of a variety of second-unit defensive stalwarts (specifically Omer Asik, Ronnie Brewer and C.J. Watson), which is a reasonably major slide and one thing to be at least reasonably involved about heading into the season. Full, healthy campaigns from Rose, fellow All-Stars Joakim Noah and Luol Deng, and key reserves Taj Gibson and Kirk Hinrich would go a long way toward walking again some of those losses. However given the bigs’ past battles with plantar fasciitis, Hinrich’s close to-constant battle with a wide variety of maladies and the astounding workload head coach Tom Thibodeau heaps on Deng and Noah, it wouldn’t necessarily be a shock to see any one of those players limited this season, which may put quite a dent in Chicago’s supposed ascent.

It can be one thing of a shock to see James limited. The 28-year-previous four-time MVP has missed simply 39 of 804 attainable regular-season video games during his 10-12 months NBA profession, with most of those coming because of deliberate rest somewhat than damage, and his frame (listed at 6-foot-eight, 250 kilos, though that might undersell it) often makes him look like an indestructible struggle machine. It might be far less shocking, though, to see the members of his supporting solid wither on the vine.

The laborious-pushed miles on Wade’s legs seem to develop into a bigger topic of dialog and a extra vital on-court docket issue with each passing year, and Erik Spoelstra’s anticipated rotation will continue to rely closely on longer-in-the-tooth vets Ray Allen (38 years outdated), Shane Battier (who’ll be 35 by Opening Night time), Chris Andersen (35) and Udonis Haslem (33, but with 10 years of very bodily play on his body) for main minutes. Plus, as Schuhmann notes, the Heat have performed 19 more games over the past three seasons than every other workforce within the NBA, a workload that Kerr thinks is bound to catch up with them.

He’s seen it before, as a member of the Michael Jordan/Scottie Pippen/Dennis Rodman/Toni Kukoc Bulls squads that gained three straight titles from 1995-ninety six by ‘ninety seven-’98. As Kelly Dwyer — my colleague, Our Fearless Chief and as canny a Bulls watcher as we have on these right here Internets — jogs my memory, the ultimate title squad was running on fumes to start out the ‘ninety seven-‘ninety eight season after hoisting consecutive O’Brien trophies. They started out 12-9 and bore little resemblance to the world-beaters that followed a document-setting 72-10 marketing campaign with a sixty nine-13 mark en path to again-to-again titles. They’d get it discovered, in fact, successful 21 of their next 25 and going 4 months without shedding consecutive games, topping the 60-win mark and depressing Utah Jazz fans over again. But it surely was an exhausting, exasperating season, marked by the specter of one other M.J. retirement, Pippen angling for a giant contract and questions about coach Phil Jackson’s future with the franchise; getting by means of all that to return to the top of the mountain took an distinctive efficiency headlined by the laser-focused depth of Jordan, one of the game’s all-time killers.. and, without throwing shade, as loads of folks have discussed in loads of ways previously, Miami’s best participant is wired only a bit differently than Chicago’s was.

That, of course, does not imply that Miami can’t develop into the first staff since Larry Chicken’s Boston Celtics to make 4 straight NBA Finals trips (1984 by 1987) or the first workforce because the Shaq-Kobe Los Angeles Lakers to win three straight rings (2000 via 2002). But with all those miles, all that age and all those enhancing groups — the more healthy Bulls, deeper Indiana Pacers and inexperienced-tinted Brooklyn Nets within the East, to say nothing of Western powers like the San Antonio Spurs, who got here inside mere seconds of knocking Miami off again in June — of their way, it’s certain to be an extremely tall order. Watching James and company vie for one more piece of history must be not less than as fascinating as watching them carve out the bits they’ve already obtained underneath their belts.


The NBA, A-through-Z: Competitive balance

LeBron James and Roy Hibbert ply their trade (Getty Images)

The free brokers have nearly all been signed up. The NBA is down to a sequence of Instagram pictures from transferring yachts and crossed fingers from nervous teams hoping their gamers keep protected in the summertime off. There’s nothing happening, save for that clock on the wall that’s ticking all the way down to the 2013-14 season.

And it’s shifting SO SLOWLY.

This is why we’ve determined to select 26 issues we’re trying ahead to in 2013-14. Or, on the very least, 26 issues that intrigue us as we wait out an offseason that feels prefer it has hundreds of miles left to cross earlier than we will get to Halloween and opening week. As a result of there are 26 letters within the alphabet – you guessed, NBA A-by way of-Z.

We proceed with competitive steadiness.

Some would well argue that the idea of “aggressive stability” within the NBA is a laughable one, and that may be a soundly prepared sizzling sports activities take. We’re yet to absorb the total breadth of what the 2011 lockout and eventual NBA collective bargaining settlement has given the league, even after an clever summer, but what we do know is that a goodly chunk of NBA teams have run screaming away from the posh tax, while a number of seem to be barely bothered by paying it. That’s not exactly the fiscal outlook the NBA was looking for.

If they had been ever honestly looking for it, that’s. On Monday, Denver Stiffs’ Jeffrey Morton published a incredible column wanting at the new and partially hid Great Divide that the NBA has created:

I have mentioned repeatedly since 2011 that the NBA lockout had much less to do with aggressive balance than it did extracting a bit more cash from the NBPA. Whereas it is more durable for super teams, such as the one in Miami to form (as a result of new commerce restrictions for tax paying teams) it does not stop giant market groups who’re prepared to pay a bit greater than they did before to bring an excellent group collectively. The luxurious tax won’t prevent large market teams from going in to the tax threshold, they only should be barely extra artistic than earlier than.

It’s not that the massive-to-enormous market teams are attempting to completely dodge the luxury tax. As a substitute, they’re attempting to miss out on the repeater tax, something that comes from consecutive tax-paying years, resulting in stiffer penalties for every time that toe is dipped into the $seventy two million-plus water. This doesn’t essentially mean teams are shedding for this summer season, they’re just prepping to re-instrument in 2014 across the similar excessive-priced talent, miss the tax, and plunge right in soon after.

Meanwhile, you have got a team within the Denver Nuggets – one which prints money with its Wal-Mart funding – avoiding the tax at all prices. You may have the sellout-incomes Oklahoma City Thunder dumping James Harden to then not contend for Kevin Martin during free agency before deciding not to pay Kendrick Perkins to not play basketball for him, while tossing out the untested Jeremy Lamb and a center picked within the lower part of the lottery as its “LOOK OUT MIAMI!”-fearsome 2013-14 unit. Whew.

And the Bulls will waive Carlos Boozer next year despite a quarter-century of through-the-roof profits. And the Indiana Pacers must mind each penny. And the beat goes on …

With that in place, lower than two years and just three technical offseasons into the brand new CBA, we nonetheless don’t know how it will all shake out. Possibly this league will function a litany of baseball-styled top-heavy and decrease-rung payrolls. Then again, possibly the house owners deserve what they’re getting after over a decade of silly spending and poor planning within the years following the 1998-99 lockout.

The followers, of course, deserve none of this.

In the place of that frustration, though, comes the 2013-14 campaign. One that could produce a ridiculously-entertaining common and postseason – even if it ends with the identical end result, and LeBron James hoisting the trophy for the third straight June.

In his convention alone the Indiana Pacers have considerably upgraded their roster in ways that don’t even factor former All-Star Danny Granger’s attainable presence. The Chicago Bulls have gotten severe once more, and will add a playmaker and shooter in Mike Dunleavy Jr. to, oh yeah, associate with the return of 2010-eleven NBA MVP Derrick Rose. The Knicks, for all of the laughs we’ve had at their expense, might genuinely improve on the play (if not the document) of the crew’s fifty four-win season from final 12 months. And for a team loaded with gamers we’ve seen play hundreds of instances, the Brooklyn Nets stay an interesting and unpredictable wild card.

Meanwhile, the Thunder still boast two of the league’s greatest players, children that also improving year by yr. The San Antonio Spurs aren’t going anyplace, the Golden State Warriors have loaded up on more wing expertise and must be wholesome by October, the Memphis Grizzlies still don’t like it when you rating on them, the Los Angeles Clippers have an actual (profitable! Not to denigrate!) coach now, and the Houston Rockets simply added Dwight Howard.

(And the Lakers will probably be on national TELEVISION 25 times subsequent year!)

This remains to be going to be a wildly entertaining year, because as fun as 2012-13 turned out to be, it didn’t feature anyplace close to the amount of championship-stage threats as 2013-14 ought to. Well being-prepared, and tankers-forgotten, this should develop into one thing particular.

Now we’ll just need to see how much the homeowners will destroy things between now and the next lockout.


Maradona accused of kicking photographer in the groin ‘like he was taking a free kick’


Like the people who run with the bulls in Pamplona, the paparazzi in Argentina continue to tempt fate and risk their fertility by following Maradona around Buenos Aires. In the latest incident, a photographer for a neighborhood superstar journal met the wrath of Maradona’s foot and was worse off for it.

From the AP:

The “Gente” journal photographer Enrique Medina filed a police criticism claiming the 1986 World Cup winner attacked him outside Maradona’s father’s home on Sunday evening.

Medina informed the Associated Press on Monday that Maradona ran at him “like he was taking a free-kick” and kicked him so hard within the groin and higher leg space that he “doubled over in ache”.

This comes two months after Maradona threw stones at photographers who adopted him from the airport and was caught on video kicking one in all them. And again in 1994 he famously acquired a suspended jail sentence of two years and 10 months for shooting an air rifle at journalists.

The lesson here? If you’re going to take pictures of Maradona, be sure to put on a medieval swimsuit of armor while you do it. And if Maradona starts lining up your crotch like he is taking a free kick you might need to move.


Derrick Rose says he ‘will definitely be playing’ in first game of Chicago Bulls’ season

Derrick Rose says he’ll be back running the break come October. (Brian Babineau/NBAE/Getty Images)

It’s been nearly 15 months since Derrick Rose landed awkwardly after a jump stop in the late stages of a playoff win, tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee and altering two seasons’ worth of reality for a Chicago Bulls team whose title hopes rested nearly as much on the MVP point guard’s ability to slice and dice as they did on an elite defense created by coach Tom Thibodeau and orchestrated by center Joakim Noah. Rose’s highly anticipated return from surgery and rehabilitation was first expected to come around the All-Star break in February, about a month after he’d begun taking “predictable contact” in team workouts.

As you surely know, that didn’t happen. Rose continued to sit out despite being cleared by Chicago’s medical staff for game action in early March, despite unsourced reports that he’d play from popular rappers and despite showing in pregame warmups that he can explode to the basket off his left leg; he did not return to the Bulls at all last season. It was a decision supported by opponents and teammates alike, but also one that frustrated many Chicago fans who found Rose’s insistence on not returning until he felt fully ready (regardless of what the doctors said) somewhat maddening.

As the summer’s worn on, we’ve heard Thibodeau say Rose looks “great” and we’ve heard Rose say he “had to be selfish” in his rehab, but we hadn’t heard the words all Bulls fans — and fans of other teams who love stuff that’s great and awesome — really wanted to hear. Until today, that is.

From Rose’s comments at an Adidas event in Madrid, Spain, according to Jorge Sierra of HoopsHype:

“I should be able to play in the first game of season,” Rose said. “I know I’m anxious right now to play. My health is everything right now, it’s 100 percent. But right now, the first game.. I will definitely be playing it.”

OK, cool — so when the Bulls tip off the 2013-14 regular season, Derrick Rose will make his first appearance since April 2012. Awesome.

Hmm? What’s that, HoopsHype? Keep reading? Well, OK:

“We will play in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil [October 12], the first NBA game ever in Rio, so that’s going to be a big game not only for the Bulls but for the NBA. Just some minutes out there, see how it feels just to be back on the court and enjoy the experience.”

Oh, so Rose will be available for preseason play (albeit, we’re sure, in very, very limited doses)? So much the better.

On some level, this news will surely spark some eye-rolling among Bulls fans — “Oh, wow, you’re saying you’ll ‘definitely’ be ready to go 18 months after an injury that typically carries a recovery time half that long. Thanks a pantload, Chet.” And that, of course, is a reasonable perspective. Still, given how emotionally and mentally taxing this rehab has clearly been for the former No. 1 overall pick, hearing Rose say that he feels “just strong as I’ve been” mentally as he gets ready for the season seems like a plus.

So does the approach Rose says he’s taken to getting with his teammates early and often this summer:

“This next season is huge for us,” Rose said. “We’re definitely a contender for the title this year. I’ve been talking to my guys, trying to be more vocal as a leader, just texting them, calling them, just trying to communicate with them to let them know that I will be there next year.”

Thibodeau, for his part, recently told reporters covering the Bulls at Las Vegas Summer League that he knows Rose is “anxious to get started” and is “feeling as well as he has in a long, long time,” according to K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune:

“You can’t be out the amount of time that he has been without going through an adjustment period when he comes back,” Thibodeau said. “That will be normal. But from a physical and mental standpoint he’s terrific. We feel good that we have Kirk [Hinrich] backing him up. That’s a big plus.

“We’re going to see what he can handle first. We’re not anticipating big limitations on him. But the preseason, that’s what that is there for. We’ll see how those minutes unfold. Then we’ll get started in the regular season. He’ll be fine.”

We certainly hope so — before his injury, Rose was one of the league’s truly transcendent athletic specimens, a player capable of jaw-dropping feats of athleticism and on-court grace. He’ll have an awful lot to live up to when he comes back; here’s hoping a year and a half’s enough time to get back to this level of form.

Hat-tip to Spencer Lund at Dime on the Rose fan video.

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