Coming into the first round NBA playoff match up with the Philadelphia 76ers, the Chicago Bulls star guard, Derrick Rose, had a cloud of doubt looming over his game as he entered the playoffs playing in just five of the final 22 regular season games.
Worries of rust and adjusting to in-game play were the biggest areas of concern following Rose, doubts he erased in Game 1 after a slow first-quarter start.
Rose ended up with a near triple-double, racking up 23 points, nine assists and nine rebounds in 37 minutes of play.
The game appeared to be coming to a routine close, until Rose came up limp after injuring his left leg with just 1:10 left in the fourth quarter.
The first thought of fans everywhere is why was Rose in the game with a little over a minute left, especially since the Bulls held a comfortable 99-87 lead. Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau's decision to keep Rose in the game that late could cost Chicago a real run at an NBA title this season.
Rose appeared to be in a very inspired mood, showing emotion and even getting a technical foul in the game, something rarely seen from Rose. He clearly had his mind and body ready for a deep playoff run, but the late-game injury could put a halt to all of that before it ever really began.
The Bulls came away with a big 103-91 win in Game 1, but they may have lost their NBA title hopes in the process. It's a shame that such a breakout effort by Rose will be overshadowed by his latest in a string of injuries that has cast a black cloud over Rose's 2011-'12 season..
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