Sportress of Blogitude

Joakim Noah on Derrick Rose’s latest injury: ‘Everybody needs to chill the f— out’

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To say that Derrick Rose has been snakebit in his attempt to return to NBA action for the 2014-15 season would be a tremendous disservice to the word “snakebit.”

After undergoing two major knee surgeries in the past two seasons, it was the hope that Rose’s comeback this season would go off without a hitch. It hasn’t.

Rose, having already missed four games out of the Chicago Bulls’ first eight with ankle issues, tweaked his left hamstring during Thursday’s 100-93 win over the Toronto Raptors, leaving with less than two minutes remaining in the game.

The Bulls point guard said after the game he was suffering cramps in his hamstring, deemed it minor and downplayed the need for an MRI, per a Chicago Tribune report, and indicated the latest malady goes with the territory as he returns to full-time action.

“Just over-stepped. Probably stretched it out a little bit more with my left leg, and probably got a cramp in it,” Rose told reporters. “It just comes with the process in missing two years.

“This is going to happen. I’ve talked to a lot of people who have had surgeries. My agent (B.J. Armstrong) had five or six surgeries. Just trying to do everything right. Eat right, hydrate right, stretch right, work on my flexibility. Just try to put everything on my side … just trying to get better.’’

While Rose was taking the diplomatic approach to the latest detour in his comeback, Joakim Noah, who comforted Rose on the bench after the injury, unleashed a profanity-laced commentary in an impassioned defense of his teammate.

“As a teammate, it’s frustrating because I feel like he’s sometimes portrayed as something that he’s not,” Noah said. “You don’t come back from the injuries he has come back from without unbelievable commitment.

“It’s disappointing because I know how much he cares about this game. I see it every day. We’re really in this together. This is not a one-man team. But at the end of the day, we need him. I don’t want to see him down.

“I know sometimes it’s frustrating. You have injuries. You have tweaks. Every time something happens to him, people act like it’s the end of the world. That’s f—— so lame to me. Like, relax. Like, OK, he’s coming back from two crazy surgeries. Obviously, we’re being conservative with him and when things aren’t going right, he has to listen to his body more than anybody. So everybody needs to chill the f— out.

Noah then composed himself and apologized for his use of salty language.

“I’m sorry for cursing,” Noah said. “But I’m really passionate about this. I don’t like to see him down. He doesn’t say that he’s down. But I don’t like it when people portray him and judge him because it’s not fair to him. It’s not.”

Rose is of course under fire for some comments he made earlier in the week about how he considers his long-term health as it relates to missing games. The Bulls superstar then said Thursday that he “could care less” about those who criticized him for his stance.

It appears that his Bulls teammates, for now, are rallying around Rose as he navigates what has turned into an unfortunately turbulent return to the court, one that has been compromised by setback after setback.