Let’s just start with that because silly Internet rumors are swirling: Derrick Rose will not play in Game 2 Wednesday night and media reports are Tom Thibodeau was “puzzled” and “amused” with the suggestion he might play Game 3. If you want to believe Rose will choose the first in-game test of his knee to come in the playoffs with LeBron James guarding him, you go right ahead.
Now we can move on to the real Bulls injury news.
Luol Deng was ruled out by coach Tom Thibodeau, reports Aggrey Sam of CSNChicago.com. Deng is still in Chicago dealing with the complications of a spinal tap he had last week.
As for Kirk Hinrich, the swelling in his calf is down and Thibodeau said, “we’ll see” about shootaround and the game. He is officially listed as doubtful.
The Bulls could use those two and any help they can get as you can expect a much more aggressive Heat team in Game 2 after the Bulls took Game 1. You can also expect to see a lot less of Ray Allen and his matador defense on the court in crunch time trying to shut down Nate Robinson.
Hassan Whiteside recorded a triple-double last night against the Hornets, and his tenth block was particularly impressive. He didn’t so much block Marvin Williams‘ layup attempt as pluck it out of the air with one hand. It almost looks like it should count as a block, rebound and steal at the same time.
The NBA world has taken notice of the water crisis in Flint, Michigan. In Thursday night’s home game against the Knicks on TNT, Pistons players wore warmup shirts that read “FLINT NOW,” and the organization announced a $500,000 donation towards providing clean water for residents of the town.
Former Pistons great and general basketball legend Rasheed Wallace went even further, according to a tweet from his alma mater, the University of North Carolina:
Sheed obviously has a connection to Michigan, having played in Detroit for six years (including on the 2004 title team) and serving as an assistant coach for the Pistons during the 2013-14 season. This was an incredible gesture by him for the residents of a town that has been without drinkable water for a long time.
The Kings are a complete mess right now. After a loss to the Nets on Friday night, the team is reportedly considering firing head coach George Karl, who has been with the team for just about one year, and DeMarcus Cousins says they have “a bigger issue than the players.”
But, on the bright side, Cousins is still a monster on the court. During the Nets loss, he posted a triple-double with 24 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists, showing why he’s the one thing about this franchise that is going to be worth talking about long-term.
Russell Westbrook has been wearing the new Air Jordan XXX on the court for nearly a month now. Considering he’s averaging a triple-double in his last 10 games — 22 points, 12 assists, 10 rebounds — I’d say he’s pretty comfortable in them.
Continuing a trend of using the respected Jordan brand name with modern players to sell the shoes, this latest ad for the Air Jordan XXX shoes features a young hypeman who describes Westbrook as “the new Big Bang,” and asks people to “make room – as the man is about to take off.”
The Air Jordan XXX hit retail stores on Feb. 12. Westbrook will be wearing them next weekend in Toronto for the All-Star Game.