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Post-surgery, Bulls Noah getting comfortable

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NBA Defensive Player of the Year Joakim Noah is accustomed to rejections, the type the Chicago Bulls center dealt Wednesday when asked about the condition of his left knee.

Noah stared before offering a terse response to a question about whether the surgically repaired knee was feeling different than last season.

“Yeah … I had surgery,” Noah said. “It’s fine. It’s a work in progress. It’s getting better. I’m happy with where it’s at. Let me live, man. Jeez.”

The Bulls are planning to manage Noah’s minutes, but coach Tom Thibodeau is not they type to commit to a detailed playing time restriction. Similar thoughts on how point guard Derrick Rose will be used have been downplayed by the coaching staff.

“We’ll just see how it goes,” Thibodeau said. “We’ve got some guys where it’s a situation where they need to work, they need to play. But they also need to do what they can handle. It all plays into it.”

Noah said the Bulls have a plan for his workload and he is thrilled to be experiencing no pain.

“None at all,” he said. “In the beginning, I was a little bit more uncomfortable, I was a little limited. I still have to get my strength back; I have to get the strength back in my leg. I’m just trying to manage practicing, playing. But overall I’m happy with where it’s at.”

The Bulls open the season Wednesday at New York against the Knicks. The status of shooting guard Jimmy Butler is not known, but he sounded optimistic he would return quickly from a thumb injury.

Up to the minute news and reports from the news wire of The Sports Xchange.

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