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CLEVELAND -- Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose will miss Friday's game against the Cleveland Cavaliers because of a toe injury. It will be the third straight contest the injury has prohibited his playing.Earlier Friday, Rose said he has "a little regret" about playing two games last weekend on the injured toe. Rose did not participate in Friday morning's shootaround. Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau was vague about how much longer Rose would be relegated to the sidelines. "It's day to day," Thibodeau said. "And the thing is, no one can say how he feels. Only he can say that. Each day he's moving in the right direction. And when he's ready to go, he'll go. Here's the thing about our team, we have more than enough to win with. So if he's hurt, he's injured, he doesn't play. If he can tolerate the pain, and he feels good enough, then he'll play. That's the way it is. This is the NBA." Rose has missed the past two games because of lingering issues from a turf toe injury he aggravated Jan. 10 against the Minnesota Timberwolves.
After sitting out one game, a victory over the Washington Wizards on Jan. 11, Rose returned to play in back-to-back games against the Boston Celtics and Toronto Raptors. He led the Bulls in scoring in both games and played 39 and 41 minutes, respectively.
"A little regret," Rose said Friday about playing against the Celtics and Raptors. "But it just comes with basketball. Injuries are going to happen. But that's why I always get treatment. And that's why I always see my trainers."
Rose said he has been dealing with the injury in his left big toe off and on since his second season in the league, in 2010, when he believes he injured it during the Bulls' playoff series against the Cavaliers.
"I wasn't able to bend my toe in like three years so when [the injury] happened, it bent it and it aggravated it ... I forgot when I played on it again," Rose said. "I played on it sooner than when I was supposed to play on it and it was real bad."
Rose admitted that he has to be a little more careful with the injury."Yeah, knowing that right when it starts feeling good, it could go right back to zero," Rose said. "I definitely want to be out there playing, but I got to make the smartest decision."
C.J. Watson will again start in Rose's absence. He scored 23 points in 33 minutes during a 118-97 victory Tuesday over the Suns.
Rose is averaging 20.8 points and 8.7 assists per game, pushing the Bulls to a league-best 13-3 start.
Nick Friedell covers the Bulls for ESPNChicago.com and ESPN 1000.