The United Center was rocking right before tip-off because not only was this the home opener of the 2013-14 season, it was Derrick Rose‘s first home game in 18 months. There was a lot of excitement and passion from the crowd once his name was called. When he came out, the crowd roared like it was the 1990s Bulls when Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen was leading the charge.
Rose came out very aggressive, looking for his shot early and often, but could not connect. He is missing layups and runners he’d normally make, but it just seems like he’s rushing his shots. The 3-point shooting was still short in the first half, just like in the Heat game. Rose was 2-of-11 in the first half.
The second half was a different story. Rose hit back-to-back three-pointers in the third quarter to get some of that rust off. Then with the game on the line after the Knicks took a one point lead, Rose hit a running one-handed floater for the game-winner. That shot just reminded fans what they been missing — that D. Rose is clutch.
He finished with 18 points, shooting only 7-of-23 from the field. This was his second-straight horrific shooting night, but that game-winning shot will alleviate some of that and may get him going.
The Bulls are still trying to get the kinks out early in the season. They looked very good in some spots during this game, but too often followed that with sloppy play. They are still trying to get back in the groove of playing with Rose. Coach Tom Thibodeau says it will take practice, time and execution. Once they all get on the same page, the Bulls will continue to climb that mountain to get where they need to be — in the midst of a championship run.