Derrick Rose has not only kept the Chicago Bulls competitive through all the injuries this season, he’s kept them near the top of the Eastern Conference.

“He’s definitely a legitimate MVP candidate,” Jeff Zillgitt, of USA Today, said on the Mully and Hanley Show of Rose. “And I think the thing that you take a look at is just not the raw numbers, because those are nice on their own, but let’s look at what he’s done with that team. And he’s played the season without one of those key components at whatever point of the season it is, whether it’s without [Carlos] Boozer at the start of the year or whether it’s Joakim Noah for the second part of that stretch.”

LISTEN: Jeff Zillgitt On The Mully And Hanley Show

For Zillgitt, and others, what Rose has done this season brings to mind a season of one of Rose’s fellow Eastern Conference All-Star starters.

“And if you go back,” Zillgitt, “and you start talking to people who look at some of the voting and you go back and look at LeBron James’ fist MVP, [they’re similar]. People are going to look at that Cavaliers team and say ‘hey, this is pretty similar to what the Chicago Bulls have.’ And you know, LeBron James did a majority of it on his own and got that team to the playoffs. And I think people are starting to look at Derrick’s season and saying he’s doing the same thing.”

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