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Jimmy Butler challenges Bulls' effort: We don't consistently 'bring that fight'

The Chicago Bulls got off to an 8-4 start under a new coach and have overcome another injury-plagued stretch for Derrick Rose.

But star guard Jimmy Butler wants to see more collective effort from the Bulls.

"I don't think we bring that fight every single night," Butler told reporters after Monday's practice. "I think we're starting to get back to that, but early on we weren't the hardest-playing team every night. We always need to and have to be the hardest-playing team."

The Bulls earned a reputation for their consistent effort and defensive prowess over the last five seasons under previous coach Tom Thibodeau, ranking in the top 10 in team defense every season. Despite their solid start under first-year coach Fred Hoiberg, the Bulls entered Tuesday night's game at Portland allowing 99.4 points per game, their highest opponents' average since the 2008-09 season.

Butler, who has established himself as an All-Star and arguably Chicago's best player, thinks the Bulls sometimes take their talent for granted.

"I just think that at times we take for granted how talented we are as a whole and with all the guys upon this roster," he said. "We think we can come out and just go through the motions at the beginning of a game, dig ourselves a little hole, and think we can just pick it up at any point and time, and it just doesn't work like that."

Chicago had won four of its previous five games before Friday's loss to the Warriors. Butler had 28 points, nine rebounds and seven assists in the loss, but the Bulls were without reserve guard Aaron Brooks (hamstring) and Rose, who missed his second straight game with an ankle sprain.

"We can't blame losses on we didn't have this guy," Butler said. "We're all NBA players, we're all supposed to be able to win games for this ballclub."

Rose, who has worn a protective mask and has dealt with blurred vision this season after suffering a broken orbital bone in training camp, returned to the Bulls' lineup for Tuesday's game against the Trail Blazers, which Chicago won 93-88. Rose had 17 points, four rebounds and six assists in the victory, while Butler led all scorers with 22 points.

ESPN Bulls reporter Nick Friedell contributed to this report.