Bulls

Obama still likes Rose's upside, has channeled his inner MJ during presidency

barryobamabullsrose111715.png

Obama still likes Rose's upside, has channeled his inner MJ during presidency

Count President Barack Obama as one fan who believes Derrick Rose still has upside.

POTUS sat down with HBO's Bill Simmons in an exclusive interview for GQ magazine for "Man of the Year." The interview as a whole is fantastic, and after Simmons asked his hard-hitters the mood lightened and turned to Obama's affinity for sports.

For the Chicago native, that included some Bulls-specific questions. Among them, Simmons asked whether Derrick Rose or Jay Cutler was more untradeable.

"Oh, I think Rose still has more upside. Remember, Rose is still awfully young," Obama said to Simmons.

Simmons asked a follow-up on whether he had given up on the 25-year-old Rose.

"I’ve not given up on him. Sadly, I think it’s hard to imagine, after that many injuries, him getting back to his MVP-season performance," Obama responded. "But he can still be a top-ten point guard."

[NBC SHOP: Gear up, Bulls fans!]

Knee, groin, ankle, hamstring and facial injuries have contributed to Rose appearing in just 110 games since the start of the 2011-12 season. He'll likely never be the 25-point-per-game scorer he was in 2011 or the MVP he was in 2012, but even while battling double vision Rose has performed well in 2015-16. In 10 games, he's averaging 13.6 points and 6.0 assists per game. His 32.4 minutes per game are the most he's averaged in a season since tearing his ACL.

Obama was on hand for the Bulls' season opener against LeBron James and the Cavaliers, sitting courtside much of the contest. In that game Rose scored 18 points and dished out five assists as the Bulls won, 97-95.

Obama also said he'd "absolutely" want to be part of the ownership for an NBA team in his post-presidency, but admitted doing so with the Bulls is unlikely.

"Well, you know, I know [Jerry] Reinsdorf pretty good—he’s not giving that thing up anytime soon," Obama said. "But I have fantasized about being able to put together a team and how much fun that would be. I think it’d be terrific."

Obama also related how he handles his presidency, or any form or leadership, to times when he'd watch Michael Jordan.

"A thing that you’re reminded of, watching those old Bulls games, is Jordan had some stinker games in the playoffs. But he would get that out of his mind, and then the next moment comes and he’s right there. He could have a terrible game for the first three quarters and then suddenly go crazy the fourth. Or he might miss a free throw, and then the next play is he’s stealing the ball and hitting the game-winning shot. Part of what I try to do—not at the level that Jordan did on the basketball court, but part of what you aspire to as president or any of these positions of leadership—is to try to figure out how to be in the moment, make the best decision you can, know that you’re going to get a bunch of them right, but a bunch of times you’re also not going to get it exactly the way you want it."

http://shop.nbcsports.com/NBC_Chicago_Bulls/partnerid/13747

Michael Porter Jr.: 'I'm the perfect fit for today's NBA game'

Michael Porter Jr.: 'I'm the perfect fit for today's NBA game'

Michael Porter Jr. grabbed some attention when he remarked that he was "perfect fit for today's NBA game" during an appearance on The Will Cain Show.

The interview went a long way towards showing off the uber-confident nature of Porter, who has consistently talked about being the best player in his class throughout the draft process. Porter also remarked that he was "an immediate impact guy," and that he "doesn't want it to take long to be one of the best players in the NBA."

His hubris has been intruiging considering the mystery surrounding the prospect.

During the interview Porter added that he would be open to doing more workouts for NBA front offices ahead of Thursday's NBA Draft. The only workout he has completed so far was his pro day workout in Chicago, and multiple reports have cited that Porter did look good shooting, though he was in an isolated setting with no defenders.

The one thing Porter has not done much throughout the process is talk about his weaknesses, which is somewhat concerning seeing as he has much to improve on. The general consensus is that a healthy Porter can get buckets at will. But if he can improve his ball-handling, rebounding and passing skills, he will be much more than a go-to scorer. Tightening his ball-handling skills is likely the key, as the ability to grab the rebound and push in transition would be a huge boon for Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg's offense.

The biggest question when it comes to Porter on the Bulls is can he fit with Lauri Markkanen? Despite receiving many favorable Kevin Durant and Paul George comparisons leading up to the draft, there is a rising sentiment that his best position in the NBA may be the power forward spot. It is not yet known if he has the foot speed to stay in front of quicker wings in today's NBA. But at six-feet-ten-inches, it is easy to imagine him having a huge advantage against slower power forwards rather than wings. While Markkanen is not currently built to be a full-time center, playing him at the five with Porter at the four would present Hoiberg with a potentially devastating closing lineup.

Versatility is the name of the game in today's league, and Michael Porter Jr. may be the key to unlocking the full potential of Hoiberg's pace-and-space attack. 

Paul Zipser says he is unlikely to return to Bulls

zipser618.jpg
USA TODAY

Paul Zipser says he is unlikely to return to Bulls

Just two years after being drafted in the second round, Paul Zipser told German media that he doesn’t see the Bulls wanting him next season.

The Bulls have until mid-July to pick up Zipser's option.

"I would not be surprised if they no longer want me.” Zipser said in German and translated via Google Translate

“Actually, I'm pretty sure I will not play in Chicago soon.”

Last month, Zipser had surgery on his fractured left foot, in his native country of Germany, which grew speculation the Bulls wouldn’t pick up his player option for next season. Zipser said the surgery "went perfectly."

Zipser showed some flashes of potential in his rookie season, averaging 5.5 per game and 2.8 rebounds in 44 games. But this past season, he played more games, but injuries derailed him from improving his overall production. He finished with four points and 2.4 rebounds in 54 games, including 12 starts.

Zipser explained that things changed from his first year to his second year.

“They were very varied," Zipser said. "The first year was just going very well. I fought my way into the team from the beginning and showed how I can help the team. The Bulls just needed someone like me. That's why it worked so well. We benefited from each other - that's why we were successful.”

“That was very different. It was not right from the beginning, and I was already struggling with my injury. It was not quite clear what it is. If you have pain in your foot, you automatically go down a bit with intensity. You just do not want to hurt yourself and be completely out. It was then difficult for me to keep my head in the sport - I did not manage that well. Nevertheless, the injury should not be an excuse.”

Nothing is official yet, but it sounds like Zipser might not dress up in a Bulls uniform next year.