One by one, Bulls players dropped out of postpractice shooting and retired to the locker room.
Not Derrick Rose.
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He put up dozens of shots, then moved to another basket Monday at the Berto Center and kept shooting. For around 15 minutes, Rose and Luol Deng were the last two players on the court following the Bulls' first practice since returning from Brazil.
It was almost as if Rose wanted to present firsthand evidence his left knee is nothing to worry about, even though he sat out Saturday's preseason game in Rio de Janeiro.
"My knee was good. I never was worried about it," Rose said. "I could have played, but the front office made the decision to sit me out. So my health is No. 1."
Coach Tom Thibodeau suggested the 12-hour flight from Chicago to Rio could be to blame for soreness in Rose's surgically repaired left knee. The Bulls practiced twice and had a number of promotional appearances before game day arrived.
"It was unusual with the travel involved," Thibodeau said. "We played those two games (in Indiana and St. Louis) and then we basically flew all night. And we had a lot of stuff going on during the day, so guys couldn't get off their feet like they normally would because of all the obligations they had with the league. We just wanted to make sure everything was good."
Thibodeau reported everything was good for both Rose and Joakim Noah, who has yet to play in the preseason because of a groin strain. After one more practice day, the Bulls will play their first preseason home game Wednesday against Detroit.
"I don't want to get ahead of myself. But based on how they practiced today, I'm assuming they're both going to be ready to go," Thibodeau said. "(Rose) moved great today and he's feeling real good."
Rose has made a couple of promotional tours to Asia for Adidas, so he should at least be used to long flights. On Monday, he talked about his strategy for dealing with extended travel.
"Usually, I sleep right through. I can sleep 10 hours," he said. "It's those 13- and 14-hour (flights) that really get me, because you can sleep nine (hours) and still have four or five more to go. So for me, take an Ambien or something like that, watch a lot of movies and make sure my TV shows are up to date."
Asked his favorite part of the trip to Rio de Janeiro, Rose didn't mention anything about the city itself.
"I think hanging with my teammates," he said. "Going out to dinner with them almost every other night, just getting to know them a little bit better.
"I think we're real close as a team. I think that trip helped us bond. I think it's going to help us in practice and when we're going through stuff in the season. It's going to feel like us against everyone else."