Bulls’ Derrick Rose misses 10th straight game

All-Star point guard Derrick Rose missed his 10th straight game

for the Chicago Bulls on Sunday and still isn’t able to run because

of an injured right groin.

”I tried to (run) but they’re taking it easy,” the reigning

league MVP said after the Bulls lost 92-78 at Oklahoma City on

Sunday. ”The most I’m doing is with the weights and stretching and

trying to loosen up the scar tissue.”

The Bulls, who have the league’s best record, are 14-6 this

season without Rose and 28-6 with him. They’re 7-3 during his

current absence.

When asked if he’d be back in time for the playoffs at the end

of the month, Rose said: ”I think so. If it’s up to me,

yeah.”

”It’s going to take me a minute to get my rhythm back.

Hopefully it takes a game and I’ll be great,” Rose said. ”We’ll

see.”

Chicago has just 12 games left in the regular season, which ends

April 26.

”I’m not worried at all,” Rose said. ”We’ve been together for

a while now. We know each other’s games. Me being out just watching

everybody, I know everybody’s tendencies now being on the bench for

this long.”

Richard Hamilton, the other half of Chicago’s starting

backcourt, missed his 14th straight game because of a right

shoulder contusion. Coach Tom Thibodeau considered him a game-time

decision but ended up keeping him on the bench.

He wasn’t sure if Hamilton would play Monday night against

Houston.

”I’ve just got to be convinced. It’s more me. He thinks he’s

ready but I just want to make sure we’re smart,” Thibodeau

said.

Thibodeau said Hamilton has been taking on more contact in

practice recently but he’s being cautious with the 12-year veteran

guard, who has played in only 16 of the Bulls’ 54 games because of

injuries. He also missed time with thigh and groin injuries.

”I feel good about Rip because Rip’s been practicing. He’s made

very good progress,” Thibodeau said. ”He has no problems with his

lower body. He’s doing a lot of shooting. The thing is the contact

part of it. I just want to make sure from that aspect. But all the

lower body injuries he’s had, he’s completely healthy.”