Skip to content

Derrick Rose and Kirk Hinrich could become dangerous backcourt combination

Nov 18, 2013, 1:10 PM EDT

New York Knicks v Chicago Bulls Getty Images

The Bulls signed Kirk Hinrich before last season for two reasons:

1. Hinrich is starting-point guard caliber, someone who capable of filling in at the position while Derrick Rose was injured.

2. Once Rose got healthy, Hinrich could play with Rose in the backcourt.

Hinrich held up his end of the bargain for No. 1. Rose missed all of last season, and not only did Hinrich help the Bulls reach the playoffs, he helped them beat the Nets in the first round.

Now that Hinrich and Rose are playing together this season, No. 2 is a little murky.

Announcement: Pro Basketball Talk’s partner FanDuel is hosting a one-day $15,000 Fantasy Basketball league for Monday night’s games. It’s just $10 to join and first prize is $2,000. Starts at 7:30pm ET. Here’s the link.

Anecdotally, the Bulls love the Hinrich-Rose combination. Via Nick Friedell of ESPNChicago.com:

“We’re making quick decisions with the group that’s out there,” Rose said of playing with Hinrich. “Especially me and Kirk, because the decision-making is unreal because the ball is moving. When you’re playing against a bunch of guys that’s really moving the ball and know the game of basketball, it’s going to be hard to guard.”

“I’m real comfortable out there with him,” Hinrich said of playing with Rose. “It gives us multiple guys [who] can play in pick-and-rolls. It’s just another dimension that we can put out there.”

“Because they can both score,” Bulls forward Carlos Boozer said. “They’re both smart players. They’re both great playmakers, and they’re just fast as s—. When you think about it, you’ve got Derrick, one of the fastest guys on the planet. Kirk’s one of the fastest guys in the league. They can both handle, they can both assist, they can both score, they shoot.

“It’s two really good players playing together, so you can go pick-and-roll on one side with Derrick, and if nothing happens — but something’s usually going to happen. But if nothing happens, if they play amazing defense, you can swing it over to Kirk and do pick-and-roll with Kirk and still have great options. Plus, they can guard multiple positions. Derrick’s strong. Kirk’s like 6-5 and strong, so it’s good for our team.”

But in the 64 minutes Rose and Hinrich have played together this season, the Bulls have been much worse statistically on both ends of the court. Their offensive rating dips to 90.4, and their defensive rating jumps to 108.4. Both marks would rank last in the NBA over a full season, and the net rating (-18.0) is the worst of all Chicago’s two-man combinations that have played at least 10 minutes together.

However, in the Bulls’ win over the Pacers on Saturday, Rose and Hinrich played very well together. In the 16 minutes they shared the court, Chicago’s offensive rating was an awesome 123.8 and its defensive rating was a decent 101.1.

I’m inclined to attribute that to small sample size for now, especially considering how poorly the duo had done prior. But for all the reasons the Bulls players stated above, it seems this combination should work well. Maybe Hinrich and Rose just needed a little time to mesh.

I suspect Tom Thibodeau will give us a chance to find out. That’s been the plan all along.

Latest Posts
  1. Tony Parker didn’t get a no-trade clause in his new Spurs deal. Why not?

    Aug 1, 2014, 10:00 PM EDT

    2014 NBA Finals - Game Five Getty Images

    Only six NBA players have no-trade clauses, and Parker wasn’t eligible under the circumstances.

  2. Report: Corey Brewer not going to Cavaliers in Kevin Love trade

    Aug 1, 2014, 5:44 PM EDT

    Kyrie Irving, Corey Brewer Kyrie Irving, Corey Brewer

    Rumor had suggested Brewer could replace Kevin Martin or J.J. Barea in deal

  3. Derrick Rose: Bulls are more talented than at any point in his career

    Aug 1, 2014, 5:00 PM EDT

    NBA Cares All-Star Day of Service NBA Cares All-Star Day of Service

    Chicago added Pau Gasol, Nikola Mirotic and Doug McDermott this summer

  4. Knicks sign second-round pick Cleanthony Early

    Aug 1, 2014, 4:14 PM EDT

    Cleanthony Early Cleanthony Early

    New York had only minimum contract available

  5. Rumor: Corey Brewer to Cleveland now part of Kevin Love trade talk

    Aug 1, 2014, 3:37 PM EDT

    Minnesota Timberwolves v Denver Nuggets Getty Images

    If true, Corey Brewer would be a nice get for the Cavaliers.

  6. Tony Parker signs (another) contract extension with Spurs

    Aug 1, 2014, 2:22 PM EDT

    2014 NBA Finals - Game Five Getty Images

    Parker’s max extension: three years, $43,335,938

  7. Dwyane Wade says he has dropped weight, ready to take on more of offense

    Aug 1, 2014, 1:00 PM EDT

    Dwyane Wade Dwyane Wade

    Wade is trying to drop pounds to make life easier on his knees. We’ll see how much that helps.

  8. Isaiah Thomas: “I always will love Sacramento, but when we play them I’m going to kill Sacramento”

    Aug 1, 2014, 11:51 AM EDT

    Sacramento Kings v Golden State Warriors Getty Images

    “So when I say I felt disrespected, I just felt like the way I played the game of basketball wasn’t appreciated.” —Isaiah Thomas referring to Sacramento management.

  9. Paul George: Cavaliers are Eastern Conference favorites

    Aug 1, 2014, 11:20 AM EDT

    Indiana Pacers v Miami Heat - Game 3 Getty Images

    Why is the Pacers’ star choosing LeBron James’ team?

  10. Report: Greg Monroe ‘doesn’t really have a great interest in going back and playing with the Pistons’

    Aug 1, 2014, 10:29 AM EDT

    Atlanta Hawks v Detroit Pistons Atlanta Hawks v Detroit Pistons

    Pistons have reportedly talked sign-and-trade with Hawks, Suns and Blazers (but Portland is out)

  11. Spurs Coyote wins Mascot of the Year

    Aug 1, 2014, 9:44 AM EDT

    San Antonio Spurs Victory Parade And Rally Getty Images

    Finally, San Antonio basketball fans have a reason to be proud

  12. Best dunks from Team USA training camp (VIDEO)

    Aug 1, 2014, 8:44 AM EDT

    Stephen Curry Stephen Curry

    Kevin Durant has a couple nice ones.

  13. Vin Baker auctioning off his 2000 Gold Medal from Sydney Olympics

    Aug 1, 2014, 8:00 AM EDT

    Vin Baker of the USA Getty Images

    Bidding starts at $35,000. Which we all have just lying around.

Featured video

Why can't Lakers have a player-coach?
Top 10 NBA Player Searches
  1. L. James (4420)
  2. K. Love (4387)
  3. D. Rose (4232)
  4. K. Bryant (2949)
  5. R. Allen (2524)
  1. K. Durant (2384)
  2. C. Anthony (2308)
  3. D. Wade (2245)
  4. E. Bledsoe (2208)
  5. B. Griffin (2158)