Bulls

Bulls: Derrick Rose to undergo facial surgery, timetable unknown

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Bulls: Derrick Rose to undergo facial surgery, timetable unknown

The Derrick Rose injury ledger has another entry to it, as an errant elbow resulted in a left orbital fracture, which will require surgery.

The team released the update on Rose Tuesday evening, hours after the Bulls’ first training camp practice. A timeline for his return will be determined after Rose’s surgery Wednesday morning.

“Derrick took a elbow to the face,” Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg said. “He’s getting that checked out right now. But he looked great when he was out there. But he took a good hard elbow.”

One day after Rose made waves on Media Day with his comments about looking ahead to free agency after the 2016-17 season, Tuesday was supposed to be the first day for Rose to begin proving himself on the floor—and in Hoiberg’s system, where now he’ll fall behind for at least a couple weeks, if his timeline holds to recent examples.

Memphis Grizzlies guard Mike Conley suffered the injury in Game 3 of the Grizzlies first round playoff series against Portland, and returned in Game 2 of the second-round series against Golden State, but that was with the urgency of the playoffs at hand.

[MORE BULLS: Derrick Rose admits to looking ahead to 2017 free agency]

Orlando Magic guard Victor Oladipo underwent surgery on a facial orbital bone on Oct. 25 and returned to play Nov. 14 approximately three weeks later, missing nine games at the start of the 2014-15 season.

If that’s the baseline for Rose, there’s a possibility he comes back before the start of the regular season.

“He rolled over. I don’t know,” said Jimmy Butler, who saw the reaction but not the actual play. “I was probably waiting for the ball to come back to me. I don’t know. I saw him in the training room after practice, so I guess I’ll go have a few words with him after this.”

Nikola Mirotic said the team was told it was nothing serious, and although the tendency when putting the words “Derrick Rose” and “injury” together leads to mass panic and skepticism, this isn’t a torn ACL or right meniscus injury.

It appears to be a freak basketball play that could’ve happened to anyone, yet it happened to Rose. Taj Gibson lightly joked when he was asked whose elbow hit Rose in the face.

“I don't know. Might have been me,” Gibson said. “It's one of those plays where everybody's going so hard. Hopefully he'll be OK.”

Until the surgery, though, there’s more questions about Rose’s future—right where this franchise seemingly left off at the end of last season.

Three Things to Watch: Bulls-76ers

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NBC Sports Chicago

Three Things to Watch: Bulls-76ers

The Bulls square off against the Sixers tonight on NBC Sports Chicago, with coverage beginning at 6:30 with Bulls Pregame Live. Here are three things to watch as the Bulls begin the stretch run of their regular season.

1. The new rotation: Most of the Bulls’ rotation looks the same, but the addition of David Nwaba, Cristiano Felicio and Cameron Payne will have a different feel. The Bulls clearly want to get a look at these guys before the end of the regular season, meaning they’re not just going to get sporadic minutes. They’ll have to play through their mistakes, play out-matched at times and be put in uncomfortable situations. But the Bulls need to see what they have, especially in Payne, who has missed the entire season to this point with a broken foot.

2. Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons: They’re quite the 1-2 punch and have the Sixers looking at their first playoff appearance since Derrick Rose hadn’t yet torn an ACL. Yeah, that’s a long time. Embiid just finished his first All-Star appearance (starting in his second year) and Simmons is the front runner for Rookie of the Year. The Bulls will have their hands full with these two. Luckily…

3. Kris Dunn is back: The Bulls wanted to get Dunn some run before heading to All-Star Weekend to play in the Rising Stars Challenge, and he looked healthy in that thumping against the Raptors last week. The good news is John Paxson says Dunn won’t be on a minutes limit, which means he’s healthy. That, of course, is more important than how he’s playing. It’ll be fun to see him, LaVine and Markkanen play together down the stretch. Their numbers together aren’t great, but the Bulls are 2-2 with all three in the lineup, and tanking or not…it’s more fun to watch when those three are rolling. 

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Of Bulls and Blackhawks, which team will finish with higher draft pick?

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USA TODAY

SportsTalk Live Podcast: Of Bulls and Blackhawks, which team will finish with higher draft pick?

On the latest SportsTalk Live Podcast, Patrick Finley (Chicago Sun-Times), Hub Arkush (ProFootball Weekly) and Jason Goch (SB Nation) join Kap on the panel.

The guys debate which team will finish with a higher draft pick when the season ends: Bulls or Blackhawks?

Plus, hear their reaction to the MLB’s new pace-of-play rule change.

Listen to the full SportsTalk Live Podcast right here: