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Even without Derrick Rose, the Chicago Bulls of 2012-13 went 45-37 (good enough for the 5th seed in the Eastern Conference) and won their first round match-up over the Brooklyn Nets before falling to the eventual champion Miami Heat. Pretty astonishing accomplishment without the team leader/former MVP/one of the best players on Earth? Definitely. In preparing for the 2013-14 campaign, the Bulls made some important off-season moves, to be sure, but the most significant difference (by a country mile) is the healthy return of Derrick Rose. With Rose in the line-up and leading the way, the Bulls will contend for the franchise’s 7th NBA championship.
A Brief History
Founded in 1966, the Bulls found success early and often, qualifying for the post-season nine times in their first eleven seasons with legends like Norm Van Lier, Jerry Sloan and Chet Walker leading the way. In the 70s and early 80s, eras dominated primarily by the Lakers and Celtics, the Bulls struggled to compete. And then came the 1984 NBA Draft…
Sitting in the third position, the Bulls watched the Houston Rockets select Hakeem Olajuwon with the first pick. Hakeem, as basketball fans know well, is one of the greatest centers in the history of the game. With the second pick the Portland Trail Blazers made a decision that would shape both franchises and the entire league, forever. Sam Bowie, the player selected with that fateful second pick, went on to play ten years in the league, averaging almost 11 points a game. With the third pick, the Bulls selected Michael Jordan who would lead the team to six titles on his way to becoming a global icon and revolutionizing the business of sports.
The Derrick Rose Era
In 1999, following the second “three-peat” orchestrated by Jordan, Scottie Pippen and head coach Phil Jackson, the Bulls fell out of contention for several years before returning to the playoff picture in the 2004-05 season with an exciting young lineup featuring Tyson Chandler, Eddie Curry and rookies Luol Deng and Ben Gordon. The Bulls returned to the playoffs the next two seasons but it was the NBA Draft of 2008 that once again changed the complexion of the storied franchise. Holding just a 1.7% chance of scoring the first pick, the Bulls hit the lottery and chose Derrick Rose as the new face of the Chicago Bulls.
After winning the Rookie of the Year in 2009, Rose, at just 22 years of age, became the youngest MVP in league history in 2011. More important than all of the personal accolades, Rose helped lead the Bulls to five consecutive playoff appearances. Beset by injuries much of the last two seasons, Rose is back in 2013-14. Surrounded by the most talented cast he’s had in his professional career, Derrick Rose and the Bulls are aiming for a championship. Get out to the United Center with guaranteed savings from ScoreBig.com.