Monday March 30th, 2015

Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose took full contact during Monday’s practice for the first time since having knee surgery in February, according to K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune.

Rose, 26, has not played since having surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his right knee. It was his third knee surgery in the past three years. He previously tore the ACL in his left knee and the same meniscus in his right knee. He was limited to just 10 games last season by the injury, but is expected to return before the playoffs begin in April.

Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau told reporters that the practice was an encouraging sign for the team.

"He was a little winded, but we expected that," Thibodeau said. "Overall I thought it was good."

• DOLLINGER: Power Rankings: Are the Clippers true contenders?

In 46 games this season, Rose has averaged 18.4 points, 5.0 assists and 3.1 rebounds while shooting 40.7% from the field and 28.7% on three pointers.

Aaron Brooks has replaced Rose in the starting lineup, averaging 14.8 points, 4.6 assists and 2.5 rebounds on 40.2% shooting overall and 30.9% from beyond the arc. The Bulls have gone 9-8 since Rose's latest knee injury.

Chicago is 45-29 on the season and is currently the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference. The Bulls play at the Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday.

• Craig Sager’s leukemia returned last week, son says

- Paul Palladino

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