Nick Friedell of ESPN reports:

D-Rose excited for All-Star

Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose knows there are pundits out there who still doubt how good his team can be. As an All-Star starter and one of the leading candidates for the NBA MVP award, Rose knows that he will have even higher profile when he walks into the Eastern Conference locker room for the first time during All-Star weekend in Los Angeles.

“Teams know other teams in the league who are good,” Rose said after shootaround before the Bulls play the Spurs on Thursday night. “You know when other teams are ballin’. Like we know the Spurs are a very good team tonight. And you kind of get that respect around the league, even though with some media we’re under the radar as being an OK team even though our record is more than OK. Other players around the league know. That’s the fun thing about it.”

Rose knows that his team has opened up eyes all over the league this year with their play, and he realizes that while the task of climbing to the top of the Eastern Conference is difficult, it’s rewarding to be mentioned alongside the Miami Heat and Boston Celtics.