Derrick Rose is expected to play against the Raptors

Gameday Preview: Bulls-Raptors

TORONTO — The Chicago Bulls are going for their seventh consecutive win Wednesday as they travel north of the boarder to play the Raptors. The big question of the day is whether or not the Bulls will be playing with Derrick Rose tonight. The Bulls star guard sprained his right wrist in the fourth quarter of Monday night’s win over the Indiana Pacers. Rose also tweaked his ankle in that game and was cloaked in ice during the post-game interview session. Multiple sources out of Chicago are reporting Rose will indeed play, including Rose himself.”If it’s up to me, I’m playing knowing it’s only sore,” Rose said. “Usually I can play through soreness.” D-Rose isn’t the only injury the Bulls have. Center Joakim Noah has been privately battling bruised tendons in his right hand which explains his decline in productivity and raised concern among those inside the Bulls organization. There is no doubt the Bulls are banged up, but patchwork isn’t something Head Coach Tom Thibodeau is afraid of. “If [Rose and Noah] go through shootaround and there are problems then they sit. If someone can’t go, the next guy steps up and gets the job done.”

If Rose doesn’t play, or spends time significant time on the bench, Thibodeau said C.J. Watson would start. Watson scored 33 points when Rose missed the Nov. 26 loss in Denver with a stiff neck. “When C.J. has played extended minutes, he has performed extremely well,” Thibodeau said. “We’re all confident in his ability.”

Even though the Bulls are banged up, they are still heavy favorites against the Toronto Raptors, who are only  9-16 and 11 games out of first place in the Eastern Conference’s Atlantic Division. Toronto is currently giving up an average of 105.2 ppg which is 25th worst in the NBA. To counter the Bulls 6 game winning streak, the Raptors have lost 7 of their last 10 games so it’s safe to say Toronto is not good. If anything happens tonight, it should be the following: The Bulls jump out to a big lead with Rose, Noah and Boozer on the court, then sit Rose and Noah and let Boozer lead the team on the court as the other two get much needed rest to lick their wounds. That would be a smart play by the Bulls, even if Rose and Noah are good to go, they are still banged up and need to be as rested as possible for the upcoming stretch of schedule.  It’s not a championship stretch by any means, but if there was a game to rest Rose and Noah it would be this game in Toronto which isn’t in front of  a home crowd paying to see the two play and it isn’t a game the Bulls are realistically in any danger of losing. With the Clippers, 76ers, and Wizards as the best three for the Bulls and the Knicks, Pistons, Bucks, and Nets to close out December, the time to rest the duo is now. Not that the schedul

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