Sam Smith of Bulls.com reports:

Slowly, though perhaps steadily, the Bulls are turning into a team. That’s 8-3 now since they moved Kirk Hinrich and Taj Gibson into the starting lineup, since Tyrus Thomas returned from injury, the team’s second four-game winning streak in that span with Friday’s 121-119 double overtime victory over the Washington Wizards thanks to Derrick Rose’s game winning 10 footer in the lane with 5.4 seconds left.

Not long ago a team that routinely was collapsing down the stretch, unable to find enough points and big game players, uncertain and uneven, the Bulls go into their final Western Conference trip of the season averaging 108 per game the last six games and with Rose officially a closer as he finished off Friday with a career high 37 points.

“Usually we were always a team that let it slip toward the end if we were in a close game,” said Rose, who rimmed out a potential game winner at the end of regulation. “It shows how much we’re improving and we’ll get better. These are the type of games you dream about when you are younger. I’m playing in my hometown, so everybody is standing up cheering. I’ve got the ball in my hand and everybody is looking at you and seeing what you are going to do. You hit the shot. It’s crazy. I really couldn’t believe it. I don’t show no emotion anyway, but I was happy. I think I missed like 20 something of these to lose games, too. To hit this one told me I’ve come a long way.”