When Derrick Rose completes his recovery from a serious knee injury suffered in April, his return will give the Chicago Bulls tremendous backcourt depth, which they will need to compete for the Eastern Conference title with the Miami Heat and Boston Celtics.
According to the Bulls, Rose is doing well in his recovery.
The offseason signings of Marco Belinelli, Kirk Hinrich and Nate Robinson, in addition to the drafting of Marquis Teague from Kentucky have bolstered the guard depth that head coach Tom Thibodeau has at his disposal.
Since today's NBA is dominated by strong point guard play and athletic teams, the return of Rose will make the Bulls a real contender in the East again.
Monday's loss to the Boston Celtics proved how much Rose's loss has impacted Chicago. Boston point guard Rajon Rondo was one rebound shy of a triple-double, and controlled the game without any resistance from Robinson or anyone else who defended him throughout the night.
Without a great offensive player to defend, Rondo was able to focus more at the offensive end of the floor. This wouldn't have been the case if Rose was in the game because he is only one of the few players in the NBA with the speed and quickness needed to shut down Rondo.
Rose makes opposing point guards work so hard at the defensive end of the floor, which tires them early in the game. Chicago doesn't have any player on its roster who can do this other than Rose.
While the Bulls have a lot of backcourt depth, they don't have many guards who can be relied on to score consistently. Rose's 20-plus points that he scores every night will be a major boost to an offense ranked 20th in the league in scoring.
When Rose returns to the court, the Bulls will have six quality guards who all have good athleticism and can shoot from the outside. Without this kind of depth, Chicago won't be able to beat the other top Eastern Conference teams that have strong guard depth such as the Celtics, Philadelphia 76ers and Brooklyn Nets.
Rose's return will allow all of the Bulls' guards to go back to their normal roles, and give Thibodeau the depth he needs to keep his team fresh for the playoffs in April.