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Careful comments about Derrick Rose’s foul-line famine

Ten free throws in three games for Derrick Rose? Are the referees swallowing their whistles when the NBA’s 2011 MVP hurtles to the rim?

‘‘Next question,’’ coach Tom Thibodeau said before weighing in. ‘‘I’ll say this: I don’t know of anyone who drives as hard as he does. Nor as fast as he does. And I think sometimes he’s penalized for being a nice guy. I’ll leave it at that.’’

No question, Rose has had a difficulty re-entry so far. His shooting (28.8 percent) is down. His turnovers (5.67 a game) are up. His defense has been a struggle. But not getting to the foul line?

‘‘I can’t complain about it,’’ Rose said. ‘‘All I can do is continue to drive. I guess I’m not getting fouled.’’

Translation: The Bulls believe the zebras need to change their stripes.

Thibs dismisses meddling report

Thibodeau scoffed at this New York Daily News item: ‘‘The Bulls’ front office has been taking an active role in telling Thibodeau how he’ll dispense minutes to Joakim Noah, among others.’’

His response: ‘‘I don’t know where you guys get that stuff. Everything is fine. I have no comment on any of that stuff.’’

The rumors that Thibodeau and general manager Gar Forman have potentially difficult differences of opinion just won’t go away, though.

Rare form in practice

Rose, who stayed on the court long after practice to shoot jump shots, said the Bulls made strides in practice Monday.

‘‘It was good. We really got up and down,’’ he said. ‘‘We scrimmaged a bit. That’s something we rarely do. We got after it today. I think everybody felt good about themselves.’’



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