Derrick Rose limped off the bus and into the arena. He limped from the coaches office to the training room, making Tom Thibodeau's pregame announcement that his star point guard would miss his third straight game with a foot injury and his 26th overall anticlimatic.
Thibodeau worries about everything all the time. Others in the Bulls organization are confident Rose will be able to return for the final two games of the regular season against the Pacers and Cavaliers on Wednesday or Thursday, if not before. While not ideal, it would still give Rose two games to acclimate himself before the postseason begins.
Meanwhile, Luol Deng, who missed two straight games with sore ribs, returned.
"I spoke with him this [Thursday] morning," Thibodeau said. "He was cleared and said he's feeling a lot better. That's a good thing."
Chris Bosh did not play for the Heat because of what coach Erik Spoelstra called "general soreness." Center Ronny Turiaf also missed the game with a hamstring injury.