For Derrick Rose, facing an off-season filled with criticism, the former League MVP needs to return to the basketball court in order to take the attention away from the nonsensical criticism he has received this off-season.
That return is around the corner.
In a move that was expected, Rose made the 19-player cut for Team USA. Rose has seven more cuts to make as Team USA prepares their roster for the World Basketball Championships in Spain this August. It’s expected that Rose’s experience with Team USA in 2010 will give him an advantage over the likes of Damian Lillard and Kyrie Irving.
Mike Krzyzewski is the head coach of Team USA and spoke about Rose on Monday.
“Well, we’d like to see him play like the Derrick of old, one of the best players in the world, an MVP in the NBA,” Krzyzewski said in a conference call Monday. “What we’ve heard is he’s in great shape. We’ll see how he’ll do in five-on-five, on the fifth day we’ll do intrasquad. Hopefully he’s going to be in top shape. Derrick’s a great player, a great guy. I know representing his country in Istanbul as one of our starting guards was a great experience for him. Hopefully this will be a launching pad for him to have a great NBA season.” -Mike Krzyzewski, ESPN Chicago
Krzyzweski has always been a believer in Rose and his confidence about his return is an encouraging sign.
Reports from Chicago Bulls’ practices this summer have indicated that Rose is looking like his MVP-form. The problem with this is that the reports are coming from Bulls’ personnel and Rose is not facing top talent–no offense to Tony Snell, Doug McDermott, and any other player on the Bulls’ summer roster.
That will be why the Team USA training camp taking place at the end of June will be good indicator of Rose’s progress.
Players like Irving and Lillard will be going at Rose aggressively in an attempt to prove themselves and show that they belong.
If Rose makes the team, the hope is that the tournament will alleviate any rust that Rose has had since the point guard has essentially played 10 games in the past 2 years.