CHICAGO, IL - APRIL 07: Derrick Rose #1 (R) and Carlos Boozer #5 of the Chicago Bulls leap to block a shot by Kevin Garnett #5 of the Boston Celtics at United Center on April 7, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agress that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

NBA Scores And More: Derrick Rose Destroys Celtics, Gerald Wallace Handles Jazz

Derrick Rose had no problem pounding the Celtics in Chicago on Thursday. Search parties are still looking for Rajon Rondo. In other action, Gerald Wallace danced all over Salt Lake, which might be illegal.

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Derrick Rose, NBA MVP: Why Does That Bother Everyone So Much?

Derrick Rose will almost certainly win the NBA MVP in 2011, but why do many people think it should go to someone else?


Celtics Vs. Bulls: Derrick Rose Stamps Out Rajon Rondo, Boston In 97-81 Chicago Win

Derrick Rose didn't need to thoroughly dominate Rajon Rondo and the Boston Celtics in the Chicago Bulls' 97-81 victory on Thursday night to squelch concerns about his team's NBA Playoffs readiness. A win would have been enough. But Rose dominated Rondo and the C's, and in the process might have convinced even the most discerning skeptics that this Bulls team is the presumptive favorite to become champion.

Rose was marvelous, shooting 9-16 from the floor and 10-10 from the line to rack up 30. He added eight assists and just three giveaways, plus five rebounds and two steals. He's now hit the 30-point mark in six of the Bulls' last 11 games, and if you account for the quality of the opponent, this was Rose's best game since he dropped 42 on the Spurs on Feb. 17. Rose's dirty little secret is that he's only shot 42 percent since the All-Star break. But against the best defense other than that of his own team, he was efficient in addition to spectacular. He was the best player on the floor, without question.

That includes Rondo, a rival with a ring but whose offense simply couldn't match that of Rose (3-10 shooting, seven points, six assists, zero turnovers) and whose defense was snuffed out like a spent cigarette. No Celtic could do much against the very defense they themselves employ; on account of having had Tom Thibodeau as a lead assistant for three years, these Celtics know how Chicago is going to handle the standard attacks. And they still couldn't do anything about it.

Luol Deng had another impressive game, scoring 23 points on 9-18 shooting with six rebounds. One of the important assets Deng and Carlos Boozer have is the ability to score without an assist, meaning that if Rose is taken out of the game by a swarming defense, they can create their own shot. Chicago's offense isn't great in total, but that's a facet of the two Pips' skills that will help on a game-to-game basis, especially if a coach like Stan Van Gundy mixes things up in defending Rose.

Meanwhile, Boston's offense looked awful. Don't rule out the strong-defense Philadelphia 76ers putting a spook into the Celtics in the first round.


Blazers Vs. Jazz: Gerald Wallace Shreds Utah, Portland Wins 98-87

Gerald Wallace dropped 29 points on 10-18 shooting on the Utah Jazz's vaunted frontcourt on Thursday as the Portland Trail Blazers racked up a 98-87 win. Marcus Camby sat with a sore neck, allowing Nate McMillan to start Wallace at power forward with LaMarcus Aldridge at center and Nicolas Batum at small forward. The Blazers have had mixed results with both this smaller lineup and the most traditional version with Camby at center, Wallace at small forward and Batum coming off the bench.

But there was little question that the smaller version would work against Utah. The Jazz essentially start two power forwards in Paul Millsap and Al Jefferson, and while Jefferson has become a good shotblocker and remains a solid defensive rebounder, it's just not an imposing defensive frontcourt. Wallace proved that by shredding Millsap; Crash did a lot of his damage from the perimeter, but got to the line and hit the offensive boards.

Batum had a nice game too, with 21 points on 9-13 shooting. Rudy Fernandez continues to struggle off the bench, and that will hurt Portland in the NBA Playoffs. But Brandon Roy perked up, hitting five of eight shots for 11 points in 21 minutes. In the Western Conference, there's no reserve player as capable of being an unbridled star from game to game, not even presumptive Sixth Man of the Year Lamar Odom or Mavericks gunner Jason Terry. Roy isn't even a shell of his peak self right now, but he's still mightily skilled, incredibly smart and talented as hell. That could swing a game, and a game can swing a series.

Gordon Hayward shot just 1-5 from the field, but earned eight free throws. Who is this guy, and what did he do with Gordon Hayward?

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