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News » Rose thinking defense

Rose thinking defense

Rose thinking defense Derrick Rose already had done the math and he felt good about the Bulls ? flight to London, which departed Saturday afternoon.

"This (flight) is nine hours. I went to China this past summer and it took 12 hours," he said. "Nine hours is less than 12, so I?m good to go anywhere."

One highlight of the Bulls ? 104-95 victory at Indiana in Friday?s preseason opener was the starting backcourt. Rose scored 17 points, John Salmons added 15 and between them, the two guards shot 14-for-21 from the field in limited minutes.

The offense is off to a good start, and coach Vinny Del Negro expects Rose to make vast improvements defensively during his second NBA season.

"Derrick has made better strides with his concentration, getting down in a defensive position and using his great athletic ability and strength," Del Negro said. "So that?s been a big plus for us, pressure on the Basketball."

Learning to defend NBA opponents isn?t easy to accomplish during the summer. But Rose said he spent plenty of time chasing his personal trainer up and down the court to get his footwork down.

The coaching staff may be using fear to help Rose focus on defense.

"Coach is trying to put it on me that in some games I?m going to have to guard Kobe (Bryant) or LeBron (James) for some possessions," Rose said. "I would love to, and if I get the opportunity I?m going to try my hardest to guard them."

Repeat injury for Thomas: The Bulls said Friday that Tyrus Thomas suffered a concussion during the preseason win over the Pacers. The injury seemed to occur when Thomas took a charge from Danny Granger in the third quarter.

This would be the second concussion in less than a year for Thomas, who missed two games last December after taking an elbow to the head. Thomas did accompany the Bulls to London.

Forward Luol Deng didn?t shoot well (3-for-10) but was active in his first game action since returning from a stress fracture in his right shin. Deng had 15 points, 5 rebounds and 3 steals in 24 minutes.

Rookie forward Taj Gibson was a pleasant surprise, finishing with 19 points and 9 rebounds. He showed a nice shooting touch from 17-18 feet and also a knack for getting to the foul line.

Forward James Johnson, the Bulls ? other first-round draft pick, fouled out in 20 minutes after scoring 4 points.

Brad Miller (groin), Kirk Hinrich (hamstring) and Jannero Pargo (wrist) sat out with minor injuries.

Landing in London: Coach Vinny Del Negro planned to go straight to practice when the Bulls arrive in London this morning. They?ll have most of two days free before playing the Utah Jazz on Tuesday.

"I talked to enough coaches that have done it," he said. "I just feel with the schedule the way it is, let?s get right to it.

"Let?s get the mind-set right on the trip, keep them up so they don?t go right to sleep and try to get their time adjusted as quick as possible. We have to put the work in."

Author: Fox Sports
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Added: October 6, 2009


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