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Grant Hill and the price of returning too soon

Pretty much all of us have had something to say about the Derrick Rose saga, and most of the comments have been critical. Now we have an interesting perspective from Grant Hill, who is convinced he returned too soon from a serious ankle injury after he too was cleared to play by his doctors.

Part of the Rose controversy was fueled by Rose’s own brother, who implied Rose didn’t want to return so fast to a team that had no chance of winning a title. That statement coupled with the amazing run by this depleted Bulls team has certainly heightened the scrutiny on Rose. He’s also said very little, so that also fuels the wild speculation. So the feeding frenzy is partly his own fault.

That said, it all comes back to the hard fact that Rose suffered a very serious knee injury, and the fact he’s been cleared by doctors to play doesn’t settle the issue of whether he should be out there. Only he knows how his knee feels.

I don’t think Rose owes his team to go out there if he’s still concerned about his knee. But from a PR perspective he should probably speak up about his condition.

Follow the Scores Report editors on Twitter @TheScoresReport. You can also follow TSR editor Gerardo Orlando @clevelandteams and @bullzeyedotcom, and you can follow TSR editor Anthony Stalter @AnthonyStalter.

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Can the Bulls hang with the Heat?

It’s hard to imagine how the Chicago Bulls can give the Miami Heat a series, but it all starts with Joakim Noah, who frankly offers quite a contrast to Derrick Rose. Noah says the Heat series will be a “war” so don’t expect Chicago to back down. They’re going to need some of the waking wounded to return as we can’t expect Rose to suit up.

Derrick Rose continues to sit out

The Chicago Bulls are a mess with all their injuries, but Derrick Rose won’t be suiting up for game 7 against the Nets. Rose finally spoke to the media and basically reiterated that he’s physically cleared to play, but . . . mentally he’s not ready.

He left open the possibility of playing against the Miami Heat if the Bulls advance.

It’s hard to criticize anyone coming off an ACL injury, and we ave no idea what this guy is feeling. But it’s still a little odd that he’s not willing to take a chance with the playoffs on the line.

Sports gear for Cyber Monday

Since you were probably too smart to venture out on Black Friday, you’re probably set to look for some good deals today on Cyber Monday. Check out all the guides out there and you’ll find some great stuff. Bullz-Eye.com included some sports gear in the Guy Stuff section of their Holiday Gift Guide, including these badass sneakers from Adidas.

The NBA may be a mess with the lockout (now resolved), but weekend warriors are always looking for the latest gear as they head into battle on the court. The new adiZero Rose 2 basketball shoes from Adidas and Derrick Rose offer a badass design as Rose asked that the 3-Stripes be placed toward the heel so defenders would see the iconic Adidas branding as he blasts past them and slam-dunks. The rest of us will settle for some easy layups but you get the picture. The shoes feature a super-lightweight, breathable build and welded sprint frame support. It’s great for serious athletes and the casual ballplayer alike, and either way anyone who wears them will at least look good.

Do your research with some other gift guides around the web for more sports gear and other cool gift ideas. Check out the guides from Esquire and from Active.com.

Heat win Game 4, take 3-1 lead in series

Chicago Bulls’ Joakim Noah (R) dives for the ball held by Miami Heat’s Udonis Haslem as Miami’s LeBron James looks on during Game 4 of their Eastern Conference Finals NBA basketball series in Miami, May 24, 2011. REUTERS/Joe Skipper (UNITED STATES – Tags: SPORT BASKETBALL)

The Miami Heat are one game away from the NBA Finals after their 101-93 overtime win against Chicago.

The Bulls had their chances in this one, but like the Thunder last night, they just couldn’t get quality looks in crunch time. And for all the (justifiable) criticism that Russell Westbrook has taken over the last couple of weeks, Derrick Rose has really struggled of late, shooting just 33% over the last three games (all losses), including a pretty dreadful 1-for-7, two-turnover effort in the 4th quarter and overtime tonight. He had seven turnovers on the evening.

One could argue that Rose has to play super-aggressive basketball since he doesn’t have someone like Kevin Durant to carry the load, and they’d be right. But the bottom line is that the Bulls aren’t going to win when Rose is only making 33% of his attempts and has more turnovers than assists.

But back to the Heat, who deserve credit for their smothering defense tonight. They forced Rose into all sorts of mistakes and held the Bulls to just 40% shooting from the field.

But the most glaring difference in this game was Mike Miller. He scored 12 points (on 5-of-8 shooting) and gathered nine boards off the bench. He was especially big in the fourth quarter when Miami made its run; he went 4-for-4 (for nine points) to go with three rebounds. That’s the kind of play that Pat Riley envisioned when he signed Miller to a full mid-level deal last summer.

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