Bulls players express shock, disbelief over latest Derrick Rose injury
A somewhat somber tone pervaded the scene during the Chicago Bulls’ shootaround Wednesday morning as the team was still reeling from the news of Derrick Rose’s latest injury setback, one that arguably calls into question if the point guard will ever again be healthy enough again to regain the dynamic athletic ability that made him one of the best players in the NBA.
It was announced Tuesday night by the Bulls that an MRI revealed Rose suffered another meniscus tear in his right knee and that the star will once again undergo surgery. It is the same injury he suffered in a Nov. 22, 2013 game, one that derailed his comeback from a torn anterior cruciate ligament suffered during the 2012 playoffs after only 10 games.
Bulls players, management and staff expressed shock, dismay and disbelief over the seemingly snake-bit Rose, who has dealt with injury after injury over the course of the past several seasons, playing in only 33 percent of the team’s regular season games over the past four seasons.
“I don’t know what else to say other than that it’s so unfair,” said Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau, via a USA Today report. “The guy’s been through so much. You know what he’s put into it. This one, not that anytime you have surgery it’s tough, this will hopefully be much shorter than the other ones. The big thing is our concern for him first as a person.”
Kirk Hinrich said he’s “really feeling” for Rose and admitted he’s still “shocked” by the news. Pau Gasol said the entire thing is “heartbreaking.”
Given Rose’s ability to come back time and again from devastating injuries is what gives Thibodeau confidence the star will be able to do so again.
“That’s what makes him who he is,” he said. “He’s got great mental toughness, he’s gotten past a lot of hurdles. This is another one. You know he’ll get past this one, too.”
Rose attempted to take a long-view approach to his health this season, and his admission that he would sit out games to make sure he would be able to enjoy a full life after basketball caused an enormous backlash as people questioned his dedication to the game and his team. Once the controversy erupted, Rose said he “could care less” about the opinions of others when it came to his long-term health.
Rose recently and throughout the season was showing flashes of returning to form. He had played in 46 of Chicago’s 57 games while averaging 18.4 points and 5.0 assists per game. He seemingly appeared to be back on track to returning to the kind of dominant play that earned him the NBA Most Valuable Player award in 2011. In a way, that seems like an eternity ago. And who knows if we’ll see that kind of play from Rose ever again.
But Rose seems to be maintaining some semblance of optimism, posting to Instagram to express his gratitude for the support he’s received.
“Checking in with you all…. Thanks for all your post and the continued support, it means a lot to me and it’s appreciated,” Rose wrote.
(photo credit: Stacy Revere/Getty Images)