SACRAMENTO – Derrick Rose was running sprints up and down the basketball court before the Thursday morning shootaround, doing all he could to loosen up the injured left hamstring.
Pau Gasol wasn’t doing much of anything, sitting courtside and rubbing the injured left calf that cost him the first game of the West Coast trip.
Neither will be available tonight against the Sacramento Kings.
“Just not ready,” Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau said of his big two.
Asked if he was worried the timetable on their returns might now be longer, he responded with, “No, just worried about the guys we have.”
Not that Rose and Gasol in street clothes is necessarily a bad thing, evident by the 105-89 win against the Clippers Monday night in Los Angeles, but at the same time this is a team used to playing with that man-down, next-one-up mentality.
“It’s a big part of being a pro,’’ Thibodeau said. “You have to know what your job is and then you have to go out and do your job. When one guy is out, the next guy step in and get the job done. That’s the way it’s been. My first year here, Joakim [Noah] missed three months. So it’s just whoever is out, the next guy get in there and get it done.’’
For Rose, who already missed four games with two sprained ankles earlier this season, this will be the seventh game he’s missed in the first 12 contests. Since the 2012 playoffs, he’s only played in 15 regular-season games.
As far as Gasol, this will only be the second game he’s missed this season, and his hope was there wouldn’t be many more.
“It was just [Wednesday] walking through a little bit and doing exercises, it’s something I still feel,’’ Gasol said. “It’s still there. So we’re just trying to make sure we don’t have any major setbacks and this thing doesn’t prolong itself more than it has to.
“I’m definitely very hopeful it’s not [long-term]. I don’t like getting my expectations high because then disappointment and frustration comes in. But I’m fairly hopeful that I should be back fairly soon.’’
With both down, expect the Bulls to start Kirk Hinrich for Rose and Taj Gibson for Gasol. That also means more playing time for Aaron Brooks and Nikola Mirotic off the bench tonight.