Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose finally returned to the basketball court following his one and a half year rehab after tearing his ACL. The Bulls opened the preseason on the road against the Indiana Pacers and defeated the Pacers 82-76. Rose only played 20 minutes but scored 13 points on 5-of-12 shooting. Rose was understandably rusty, but looked strong and much like his old self.
Seeing Rose on the floor was great for the NBA and everyone in Chicago must have been elated to see him back. Rose played very aggressively and was not afraid to attack the basket as he did many times throughout the night. While it was only a preseason game, it was very important for Rose to play and return to the basketball court.
With Rose back, the Bulls are automatically contenders in the Eastern Conference and could make a deep run this season.
Rose showed no signs of fear about his knee and if he is in attack mode already, the rest of the NBA should watch out. With this current team, the Bulls could go very far and might be able to knock off the reigning champion Miami Heat. Rose will have a lot of pressure to perform at a high level this season and many are expecting the Bulls to make a legitimate run at the NBA title.
After the first preseason game, everything seemed so far so good with Rose and the Bulls, and if this game was any indication, Rose is definitely back. I don’t think there is any doubt that Rose will play at his MVP level, and now that he appears healthy, the next question will be if he can bring the Bulls their first championship since the Michael Jordan era.