By Doug Halberstadt
This week, the National Basketball Association accomplished what the National Hockey League has been unable to get done this year. The NBA tipped off the 2012-13 season with three games Tuesday night (Oct. 30).
Meanwhile, the NHL announced the cancellation of the 2012-13 regular-season schedule through Nov. 30 because of a labor dispute between the players and the owners. The two sides have yet to agree on a collective bargaining agreement. The dispute has caused the league to cancel a total of 326 games, 26.5 percent of the season.
The Chicago Bulls tip off their season tonight (Oct. 31) when they welcome the Sacramento Kings into the United Center. Game time is 7 p.m. They finished the pre-season with a 5-2 record.
The Bulls will begin their season tonight without the services of former league MVP Derrick Rose. He is still rehabbing from a torn ACL he suffered during a playoff game last April 28. He has spent most of the offseason recuperating from the injury. He’s had to learn to walk again and has just recently been cleared to begin the early stages of participation in basketball activities. He has been limited to stationary drills at this point.
When asked about his progress, Rose replied: “My rehab is good, my leg is getting a lot stronger, and I’m able to run a little bit more. My body is feeling good. I’m in a peaceful place right now.”
Rose has admitted he still has a lot of work to do before he is able to return to the demands of the NBA.
“I’m almost there,” Rose said. “I’m staying patient. That’s the biggest thing with this rehab, and it’s what has helped me the most. I haven’t always had patience in the past, but now I have it. I’m still working on it, and I think it’s going to make me a better player and a better person.”
Chicago fans are hoping Rose is back to his former self in no time. Maybe even before the NHL starts playing again.
Kirk Hinrich is expected to be the starting point guard this evening and continue in that role until Rose is able to return.
Doug Halberstadt can be reached via e-mail at Dougster61@aol.com.
From the Oct. 31-Nov. 6, 2012, issue