CHICAGO - There isn't a member of the 76ers who doesn't recognize what Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose brings to his team.
And to a man, before they knew the severity of his injury - Rose suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee late in the fourth quarter of Chicago's 103-91 Game 1 victory in their Eastern Conference playoff matchup - the Sixers wished him well.
But they also know that the Bulls will not fold up and call it a season now that they are without the reigning league MVP for the remainder of the playoffs.
"There's a reason they had the best record in the NBA," said Iguodala, who finished with 11 points, 6 rebounds and 5 assists. "It's not a one-man show. The perception can be that at times, but they have a solid unit and a great coach. Even when their No. 1 guy was out they were still able to get wins and play high-caliber basketball."
The Bulls finished with the best record in the NBA for the second time in as many seasons, going 50-16 in this lockout-shortened season. In the 27 games without Rose they went 18-9.
At the time Iguodala made his comments, the extent of Rose's injury was not known. Still, Iguodala expected the Bulls to be tough whether or not Rose played.
"We have to come out and play a lot better than we did tonight if we are going to get a game here," Iguodala said.
The Sixers made just 1 of 9 field goals to start the game on the way to falling behind by 10-3. Their only lead in the game came on Jrue Holiday's three-pointer that opened the scoring. The Bulls led by 20 points with 4 minutes, 36 seconds left in the game after former Sixer Kyle Korver hit a 20-foot jumper.
According to Chicago coach Tom Thibodeau, Rose was still on the floor late in the game because the Chicago lead had started to dwindle, though the Sixers never cut it to less than 10 points the rest of the way.
Sixers forward Elton Brand led the team with 19 points, 7 rebounds, and 4 blocks. Brand thought it made sense for the Bulls to have Rose on the floor late in the game.
"I wasn't surprised," Brand said. "They were trying to secure a win, and he's trying to get his rhythm back in those extra two or three minutes."
Both Brand and Iguodala agreed that the Sixers are going to have to come with a better defensive effort in Game 2 on Tuesday. Rose was just 9 for 23 from the field, but the Bulls as a team still made 51.3 percent of their shots.
"We have to play better at the defensive end than we did tonight," Brand said. "They like to attack. It's different when Derrick's not out there, but these are the playoffs. You have to come ready every time."