COMMENTARY | The Chicago Bulls are off to a shaky 1-2 start, and Derrick Rose is proving that 18 months away from the court has done a number on his execution of some of the basic skills of basketball: making shots and protecting the ball.
Luckily, for the Bulls, the NBA season is a grueling 82-game gauntlet. And, fortunately for Rose, he seems to be fully recovered from an ACL injury that took away a large chunk of his career.
Here is a look at where the Bulls fare in some of this week's NBA power rankings:
Yahoo -- Marc J. Spears -- No. 11 (Last week: No. 4)
"Despite playing in the preseason, Derrick Rose has looked rusty in his return from his knee injury, averaging 14.3 points on 28.8 percent shooting from the field and 4.3 assists on 5.7 turnovers per game."
What? Preseason hype is proving to mean absolutely nothing during the regular season.
ESPN.com -- Marc Stein -- No. 9 (Last week: No. 4)
"Don't want to overreact to three games. Especially when D-Rose is harder on himself than anyone early in his comeback. But all the stuff Charles Barkley said on TNT about the Bulls not having enough scoring ... that's why I came into the season saying Indy is the East's bigger threat to Miami."
Just one week into the season and some are already questioning where the Bulls actually sit among the Eastern Conference elite, even with Rose back in the mix.
NBA.com -- John Schuhmann -- No. 9 (Last week: No. 5)
"OK, so Derrick Rose -- 15-for-52 with more turnovers (17) than assists (14) and only 10 trips to the line -- isn't quite back to MVP form just yet. But Carlos Boozer has looked terrific and with only three games in a 12-day stretch that began Sunday, there's plenty of practice time to get things right. Of course, any offensive breakthrough will have to wait until after Wednesday's big game in Indiana."
Apparently the preseason did not allow enough time for Chicago to gel in advance of the regular season?
Sports Illustrated (CNN.com) -- Matt Dollinger -- No. 15 (Last week: No. 5)
"It's been an inauspicious start for Derrick Rose, who looks exactly like an NBA player who hasn't played a game in a year. He's second in the league in turnovers (5.7 per game) and shooting a ghastly 28.8 percent. Rose has plenty of time to knock off the rust and shape the Bulls into contenders, but he needs to play better for Chicago to re-establish itself as an elite team. Don't worry, Bulls fans, this will just make Rose's eventual rise that much more compelling."
Rose may be struggling now, but most still see him as the elite leader of one of the league's best teams.
CBSSports.com -- Matt Moore -- No. 16 (Last week: No. 2)
"Well, when Derrick Rose gets back ... wait, what?"
Until the Bulls start winning consistently, this statement will apply.
With so many games during the week, expect the Bulls to continue to jump around the power rankings until they settle in a bit more with Rose back on the court.Jeremy Sickel has successfully created and operated numerous websites. His work can be read on Yahoo and Bleacher Report, and he has also appeared on various podcasts and sports talk shows around the country. Interact with Jeremy on Twitter @JeremySickel.
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- Derrick Rose
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