Bulls-Thunder: Three Takeaways From a Bounce-Back Showing

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Nov 5, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bulls guard Jimmy Butler (21) looks to pass the ball as Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant (35) defends during the first quarter at the United Center. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

1. When Derrick Rose and Jimmy Butler both play at a high level, watch out

Oklahoma City’s duo of Russell Westbrook combined for 53 points, 14 rebounds and 15 assists on Thursday night. Chicago’s duo of Derrick Rose and Jimmy Butler combined for 55 points, nine rebounds and nine assists.

When these four players are on the floor, the game’s as exciting to watch involving the Bulls. It’s a great sign that the Bulls got up for a “big game” against two of the 10 best players on the planet and virtually outplayed them down the stretch of the game.

Just like with one bad loss earlier in the week, there’s no need to overreact to one game. But, this game was needed for the Bulls, especially Rose. In the last three games, Rose had failed to reach double-digit point totals. Butler’s words on the Bulls’ effort on Tuesday might have be a nice spark heading into this one.

In the first half, it was all Jimmy Butler. Butler dropped 21 points in the first half, including hitting a quartet of three-pointers. In the second half, the Derrick Rose Takeover commenced.

And oh yeah, Jimmy Butler was as supportive as anyone about Rose’s performance:

Beef? Not quite.

Next: 2. Thursday was Joakim Noah's best performance of the first six games