Friday, February 27, 2015

Bulls star Derrick Rose out again

Derrick Rose injury 2015
The $95 million man
Man, Derrick Rose cannot catch a break.

The former No. 1 overall pick, who was finally rounding into shape after months of struggling , has underwent surgery to repair a torn meniscus. There is no timetable yet for Rose's return, but it's very likely that he will miss the remainder of the season.

The injury is a tough blow for Rose and the Chicago Bulls organization. This is the third time in four years that the franchise point guard is lost.

After tearing his ACL in Game 1 of the first round of the 2011-2012 NBA playoffs, Rose missed the entire 2012-2013 campaign, then tearing his meniscus just 10 games into his long-awaited return.

He was rumored to return for the 2014 playoffs, but that ultimately fell through, and the Rose-less 47-35 Bulls lost to the Miami Heat, 1-4, in the second round.

To paint a clearer picture, Derrick Rose played 81, 78 and 81 in his first three seasons in the league, winning the MVP Award in his third year - a career year during which he averaged 25.0 PPG, 7.7 APG and 4.1 RPG.

Since then, things haven't been rosy.

  • In the lockout-shortened 2011-2012 season, he was limited to 39 games due to injuries. Rose still averaged 21.8 PPG and a career-high 7.9 APG and was still named an All-Star, but his injury in Game 1 of the playoffs effectively slam shut the team's championship chances.
  • Rose then missed the entire 2012-2013 campaign, even though he was cleared to play in March. Despite some optimistic timetables and a rumored playoff return, Rose decided to sit out until he was "110 percent".
  • In 2013-2014, Rose returned after missing nearly 18 months. After just 10 games of action, during which he averaged 15.9 PPG and 4.3 APG, he tore his meniscus. He would miss the remainder of the season, including the playoffs, with the 48-35 Bulls losing 1-4 to the Washington Wizards in the first round.

What does this mean for the Bulls?

Derrick Rose means a lot to the Bulls and the city of Chicago. 

This injury is unfair to Rose, the organization, and the team's passionate fan base. A player of Rose's caliber should be out there competing, battling in the playoffs, and chasing a championship ring.

Even though Rose is in "high spirits" and expected to make a full return to health, this doesn't change the fact that the Bulls haven't been able to rely on him.

Sure, the Bulls are a tough bunch and fill-ins like Nate Robinson and D.J. Augustin have been doing admirable jobs, but this obviously is not enough to get Thibodeau's troops over the hump.

If Rose will be plagued by knee injuries for the rest of his playing days, the Bulls should perhaps consider trading him. But who will trade for damaged goods? And who is to tell that his injuries are anything but bad luck? He could very well return and be injury-free for the next 10 years.

As team management maps its options, the NBA world will be very curious to see how this plays out.

Update: According to Bulls GM Gar Forman, Rose is expected to return in 4 to 6 weeks.

Update 2: Rose remains confident he'll return this season.

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