AUBURN HILLS, Mich. — Taj Gibson had a career-high 23 points and the Chicago Bulls pulled away in the fourth quarter to beat the Detroit Pistons 99-79 Wednesday night.
The Pistons stayed close for most of the game, but managed only seven points in the first 10 minutes of the fourth quarter. That allowed Chicago to increase their lead to as many as 24 points as they ended a four-game losing streak.
Luol Deng led the Bulls with 27 points. Rodney Stuckey finished with 25 off the bench for Detroit but no one else had more than 13. Josh Smith had 13 points and 11 rebounds and Andre Drummond had 10 points and 11 rebounds for the Pistons.
BULLS/ROSE: As he hobbled off the court again, Derrick Rose found himself in a familiar and painful spot.
The folks at Adidas might be wincing, too. The sports apparel giant might have to find a backup plan after building its multimillion-dollar NBA marketing campaign around the Chicago Bulls’ superstar point guard, whose injured right knee will cost him the rest of the 2013-14 season that will stretch into June. Rose sat out last season following surgery on his left knee, and the Bulls are reliving a nightmare.
To some extent, so is Adidas. The company that launched “The Return” campaign documenting Rose’s recovery last year from a torn anterior cruciate ligament and his rise from a rough South Side Chicago neighborhood to stardom for the hometown team could be taking a hit, too.
“He is their counterpoint to Nike and LeBron [James],” said Marc Ganis, president of SportsCorp, a Chicago-based consulting firm. “But to being out effectively two years in a row and doubts as to how fragile his body might be in the future has to give them great pause, both in the near term and the long term as to whether he will fade from the public consciousness by not being on the national and international stage.”