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Derrick Rose certain he’ll ride out back trouble

Bulls forward Carlos Boozer turns toward basket Kings defender JasThompsscore first quarter as Chicago Bulls host SacramenKings Tuesday February 14

Bulls forward Carlos Boozer turns toward the basket and Kings defender Jason Thompson to score in the first quarter as the Chicago Bulls host the Sacramento Kings Tuesday February 14, 2012 at the United Center. | TOM CRUZE~Sun-Times

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Updated: March 16, 2012 8:21AM



Anyone who has had back pain knows what Derrick Rose is going through.

‘‘It’s just tight where you can’t move, and when you move and get going, the tightness turns to pain,’’ Rose said. ‘‘Of course, I can’t move or walk and things like that. But right now it’s getting better. Today I shot earlier. I didn’t move very much. Hopefully, tomorrow I’ll be running, and we’ll see how it feels then.’’

Rose missed his third straight game Tuesday with what’s being described as back spasms. He saw a specialist and a chiropractor Monday, after the Bulls returned from a nine-game road trip, and learned that an MRI exam revealed no structural damage, which he admitted was a relief.

He said he would meet with the chiropractor again Wednesday.

‘‘I was so worried about it at first,’’ Rose said. ‘‘I didn’t know where it came from.’’

He acknowledged the sprained left big toe that sidelined him for five games earlier this season could have played a role in his back injury.

‘‘If I get my toe right, so it doesn’t have any pain in it, hopefully my back won’t have any pain in it,’’ he said.

He said the message from the Bulls has been clear: Take your time. Coach Tom Thibodeau echoed that sentiment earlier in the day.

‘‘Each day, he’s feeling better, but [the back is] still not where we want it to be,’’ Thibodeau said. ‘‘We’re going to be patient.’’

The idea of an epidural injection to ease the pain was discussed and discarded, Rose said.

‘‘That came up, but I’m scared of shots,’’ he said. ‘‘There’s no way I could’ve done that.’’

Rose expects to recover fully but has put no timetable on his return.

‘‘I shouldn’t have any problems in the long run,’’ he said. ‘‘This back pain should be behind me in a couple days. I should be back out there in a couple days, but I’m going to take my time and be smart and make sure I’m stretching.’’

Rip returns

Guard Rip Hamilton returned after an excused absence to attend his grandmother’s funeral. He has missed eight games with a thigh injury but could return as soon as the weekend. If the injury doesn’t respond, he might be sidelined until after the All-Star break, which is scheduled for the last week in February.

MJ signed

The Bulls signed veteran point guard Mike James to a 10-day contract. James was with the Bulls earlier this season when Rose missed time because of his toe injury. He averaged four points and three assists in three games.



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