NBA: Bulls say wait ’til Thursday
By Andrew Seligman
DEERFIELD, Ill. ó Derrick Rose or Michael Beasley?
Chicago Bulls general manager John Paxson wasn’t about to announce a decision on Tuesday, though he might have hinted at his intentions for the No. 1 pick despite his best effort to hide them.
Surveying the microphones and notepads, he grinned and said, “If anybody thinks I’m going to give something away today, I’m not.”
The Bulls have the top pick in the NBA draft on Thursday and a big decision to make, and Paxson said he’s thinking about the long term.
Considering he believes Beasley will have a more immediate impact, that could be an indication he’s leaning toward Rose.
“I know we can’t go wrong either way,” he said. “Every team would like to think when they have a bad year, they can turn it around overnight. But we sit here and we have to look a few years down the road and how we’re going to be better then to establish something.”
The Beasley-Rose debate began in Chicago when the Bulls defied 1.7 percent odds and won the lottery.
Do they go with Rose, who grew up on the city’s South Side and played at Simeon High School before leading Memphis topa record 38 wins and the NCAA finals in his lone season? Or Beasley, who delivered one of the best seasons ever by a college freshman?
Rose averaged 14.9 points and 4.7 assists and was better in the postseason when his scoring jumped to 20.8 per game before things ended on a sour note. He missed one of two free throws with 10.8 seconds left in regulation, and Kansas’ Mario Chalmers took advantage, hitting a 3-pointer to send the game into overtime and, ultimately, the Jayhawks to the championship.
Then there’s Beasley.
He became the third freshman in NCAA history to lead the nation in rebounds at 12.4 per game while averaging 26.2 points. He had the second-most rebounds and third-most points by a freshman in NCAA history, helping Kansas State to its first NCAA tournament victory in 20 years.
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