Derrick Rose deals the final blow

The Bulls ran into a feisty Pacers squad but their MVP candidate muscled them to a win

Updated: April 16, 2011, 8:46 PM ET
By Jon Greenberg | ESPNChicago.com

CHICAGO -- You know that old NBA axiom: A playoff series doesn't truly begin until Kurt Thomas dishes out an inadvertent elbow and Derrick Rose scores 39 points.

While Thomas, a veteran of many playoff wars, including possibly the Trojan and Peloponnesian varieties, nearly knocked out Pacers forward Tyler Hansborough late in the third quarter, it was Rose who dealt the killing blows at the end of Saturday's game.

Rose certainly earned his MVP chants in a wild playoff opener ...

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