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Rushing Derrick Rose return could lead to other injuries

Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose wipes his face as he works out before an NBA basketball game between Chicago Bulls

Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose wipes his face as he works out before an NBA basketball game between the Chicago Bulls and the Indiana Pacers in Chicago on Saturday, March 23, 2013. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

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MINNEAPOLIS — There’s no rule for the Bulls to follow.

But there is a cautionary tale.

Like Bulls star Derrick Rose, Timberwolves point guard Ricky Rubio tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee last season.

Rubio’s injury occurred last March, so he was always on a faster track than Rose, who tore his left ACL in the first game of the playoffs against the 76ers last April.

Rubio returned to the court Dec. 15; Rose is still out.

But Timberwolves coach Rick Adelman said Sunday that Rubio only started to feel confident playing through the injury recently. And while he came back in December, Rubio only played in five of the next 10 games as other injuries popped up because he was overcompensating for the knee.

“Oh, yeah,’’ Adelman said when asked if Rubio had trust issues to work through with the knee.

“When you go through something like that, you wonder. And you also have problems in other areas. He had some back problems, where he missed some games, and those things happen.

“He had to be patient, knowing he would have some ups and downs, but I think he’s playing much better, much more confident in what he can do. But I think [trust issues are] always going to be there when you first come back [from an ACL injury] and start.’’

Rose’s situation is obviously different than Rubio’s, and Rose has been putting in much more practice time than Rubio did before his return, but second-guessing an injury is human nature.

Even if Rose returns this week, there are only 13 regular-season games left for him to work through any confidence issues he might have before the playoffs start.

Walking wounded

Despite being out, Rose made the trip.

Joakim Noah (plantar fasciitis, right foot) and Richard Hamilton (back) stayed in Chicago, and Marco Belinelli was a late scratch because of an abdominal strain.

Coach Tom Thibodeau called them all day-to-day. The Bulls hope to have Noah and Belinelli back for the game Wednesday against the Heat.

Rose and Hamilton are long shots for that game and will be re-evaluated in practice Tuesday.

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