It was a sight that Chicago Bulls fans were clamoring to see all of last season; Derrick Rose in game uniform ready to take the court with his teammates.
That was seen on Friday at the Berto Center when Rose took to the podium to speak with reporters on the opening day of the Chicago Bulls’ training camp.
Rose is returning for the first time since tearing his ACL against the Philadelphia 76ers in April of 2012. Despite having not played for an entire calendar year, Rose is returning with the same focus.
“The thing that drives me is just winning the championship,” Rose said Friday at Bulls media day. “That’s the only thing on my résumé that I’m missing. This is a great time to do it where everybody is watching. It’s the biggest stage you could possibly play on. My teammates are preparing themselves for a big year, and I am too. It should be a crazy, magical year where I think there’s going to be a lot of people watching. It should be exciting to the Bulls fans.” -Derrick Rose, ESPN Chicago
To go along with his focus of winning a championship, Rose believes that the Bulls have the right pieces.
“I think we’ve got the right pieces,” Rose said. “Everybody that’s coming in, it seems like they’ve got their head on right. You have guys that’s been here the whole summer, just improving their games, trying to make the team better. That’s all you can ask for when you’re dealing with grown men.-Rose, ESPN Chicago
Rose’s return to the Bulls this season will certainly have everyone watching. When Derrick Rose takes the court against the defending NBA Champions Miami Heat in Miami on October 29, not just the Chicago area, but the entire nation will be watching his return. Of course, before then, Rose will have played in the Bulls’ pre-season games.
As for his quest of winning a championship, some have predicted that Bulls will do just that this season. Time will tell. The Miami Heat proved to be better than a Bulls team without Rose and Luol Deng last season. The presumption is both Deng and Rose will be healthy, but beyond that, this Bulls team is essentially the same team from last season.
There has been question over this past year about what type of player Rose will be when he returns to the court. This summer, Rose has added at least 10 pounds of muscle and expects to be the same MVP-caliber player if not better when he takes the court for the first time since his injury.
“I think I’m going to play the same way,” Rose said. “I think the only thing that changed in my game is my confidence level. I think I’m way more confident in my craft, in my game. I worked out a whole year training my body. Going out there and showing people that I’m the same player but a more efficient player, that’s what I’m trying to prove.”-Rose, ESPN Chicago
There is no question that Rose has certainly trained rigorously for his return to the court. There has been countless videos over the course of this past year portraying Rose on courts around world showing off his basketball skills. Skills that Bulls fans will once again see beginning October 5 in the Bulls first pre-season game against the Indiana Pacers.