Recently, Mitch Lawrence of the New York Daily News wrote a piece about how injured Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose was worried about the team trading away his friends and going into rebuilding mode. That little piece written in New York caused an earthquake in Bulls Nation.
Since Rose opted to miss the entire season last year because of his torn MCL, his reputation and image has taken a hit. Chicago is a blue collar, hard working town, and when a player is injured, he has to be a warrior and get back to playing, even if he is not 100% healthy. Rose decided that if he had any doubt, he would not go out there and take a risk.
While many fans were dumbfounded as to why he would make such a decision, Rose’s teammates had his back. Not one player publicly criticized him for not playing, even as some of them had serious injuries themselves and came back from them. Also, there were no “anonymous reports” from the locker room criticizing him.
Now Rose is supposedly saying he fears a rebuilding project? Rose is just repaying the same teammates who helped him last season. What else would you expect Rose to say? These guys took a lot of questions about him when he kept quiet. He can say he does not want the rebuilding program, but he is also the same one who said in an interview with CSN Chicago last year that personnel decisions were not up to him and that he just has to “roll with it.”
After a second knee injury (torn meniscus) cut another season short, the Bulls are left again without the face of their franchise. This time, however, there is no Nate Robinson to swoop in and keep things from falling apart. The season is spiraling in a hurry and it could get ugly before it is over.
Seeing how this offseason will be filled with top free agents such as Kevin Love, Tony Parker, and (here we go again) Lebron James, and with a rich draft class coming with players such as Chicago’s own Jabari Parker, Andrew Wiggins, and Julius Randle, the Bulls would be foolish not to consider blowing up what they have and start all over. The beauty of the NBA is that the rebuilding process does not have to be long. This could be an entirely new team next year, and could be a much better team.
Derrick Rose knows what is on the horizon for the Bulls. He also knows that if he does not show at least some sort of defense for his teammates, his reputation among the players around the league will take a hit and THAT cannot happen. If the story is true (seeing that he has not said anything publicly yet), I am glad. He shows he has the same loyalty that was shown for him, and he is not one of those selfish “It’s just about me” type of players.