Mayweather-Pacquiao Has Nothing On Rose-Irving Phantom Clash


CHICAGO – No Kyrie Irving. No Derrick Rose. No kidding.

Viewers of NBA TV probably knew they were gambling if their expressed interest in seeing Cleveland at Chicago Tuesday night from United Center had anything to do with a possible comeback by Rose. The Bulls’ electric point guard, unplugged since May surgery on his left knee, had been penciled by some to be ready for action at this point on the NBA calendar — though an equal or greater number of Rose watchers were preaching continued patience, into March and maybe all the way to October.

So Rose — despite what Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau called “daily improvement” Tuesday — was  a longshot anyway to hook up (in whatever minutes-limited state he might have come back) with Irving, the Cavaliers’ exciting young point guard fresh off a breakthrough All-Star Weekend. Then the Cavs made that doubly official by ruling Irving out too, lost to a hyperextended right knee that might sideline him Wednesday against Toronto as well.

The missed opportunity Tuesday makes it seven consecutive games that either Irving, Rose or both sat out with injuries. Their teams are done for the season as of this one, which means they’ll be pushing 2014 before fans are treated to what could be one of the league’s stellar 1-on-1 matchups for the next decade or so.

Assuming it ever gets started. This is starting to feel like Floyd Mayweather-Manny Pacquiao.

Last season, the teams met just three times in the post-lockout schedule. Irving missed the first one, Rose missed the second and both of them sat out the regular-season finale. There was no preseason clash, either, to start Irving’s rookie season due to the limited home-and-home arrangement of the scrunched prep time (the Bulls played Indiana twice, the Cavs hooked up with Detroit.)

This season, of course, Rose has been rehabbing from ACL surgery. Irving missed the second meeting during an 11-game layoff with a fractured left index finger.

In Irving’s three appearances against Chicago across two seasons, he averaged 14.3 points and 4.3 assists while shooting 40.5 percent. Rose has faced the Cavaliers 12 times, averaging 18.2 points and 8.0 assists and shooting 41.3 percent.

Chicago has dominated the series lately, winning 11 straight by an average of 17.8 points. But at this rate, Irving will be older than Uncle Drew by the time he squares up against Rose.

It also might raise questions about the long-term viability of leaning on a point guard — who takes the most punishment, pound for pound, of any player — as your superstar, leader and first (and maybe second) option. Rose and Irving have been as dinged up, with multiple ailments, as any All-Stars in the league the past two seasons.

For now, though, we’ll consider it a fluke.

“I don’t know if it’s weird,” Cleveland coach Byron Scott told reporters at Tuesday’s shootaround. “It’s unfortunate. I love Derrick Rose just as a person. He’s an unbelievable basketball player, but he’s one of our best people in this league.

“So for me, it’s unfortunate to have a guy that is as good as he is … off the court not being able to play because of the injuries. I hope he comes back 110 percent and these two guys will be able to get it on sometime next season.”

Considering that Scott earlier this month said he wants Irving to work out with Chris Paul this summer so he “would learn from the best,” that just throws gas on the potential clash of Irving vs. Rose. If they ever manage to strike a match.


  1. MjfromOKC says:

    The NBA shouldnt pay you to write garbage like this.

  2. Syao says:

    Healthy Derrick Rose vs Kyrie Irving ? LMAO More Practice Irving

  3. GREGORY BROWN says:

    stop comparing Floyd Mayweather. Mayweather has never ducked anyone. boxing is a business.Mayweather is hated because he learned that it is better to end up rich and healthy instead of broke and punch drunk.

  4. big man 7 foot 2 says:

    il’ll take my guy uncle drew any day over the week over rose, rose is finished

  5. Jimmy says:

    There are some of you not giving Kyrie enough credit. These guys and myself have clearly watched more Cavs games than you. Kyrie is unstoppable in clutch situations. Kyrie most likely has more game winners than DRose ever had, and its only his 2nd season. He was ranked number one in the league in clutch situations, higher than Kobe, Durant and Lebron. Kyrie has a jumpshot ten times better than DRose and has better ballhandling. DRose is faster yes, stronger yes. That is about it. Also someone said Damien Lillard is better than Kyrie. Wow work on your basketball knowledge.

  6. adelepeace says:

    the final answer D ROSE can nat be compared with any PG in the league he is a gifted player with all that size and strength & quickness he is better than all of them the only player who is compared to rose is only LEBRON ……you people forgot how good rose is he is a legend till now …..c’mon guys?

    • adelepeace says:

      to be quit honest irving is the second best point guard in the league so he could be compared but rose is way better than him

  7. yahel says:

    kyrie irving is better than derrick rose

  8. charlie says:

    is this a joke….your tlking bout an mvp two yrs ago being compared to a 2 yr point guard who doesnt have playoff experience and doesnt have even close the same athletic ability. Yeah let me know when kyrie scores 36 points his first playoff game againest a younger celtics team like rose did his rookie year.

  9. xWildinGx says:

    :O First time I see the announcer of the top 10 plays ”You Betcha” LmaoO

  10. Matthew says:

    Mayweather should spend some time with the Pacers. He’s all talk no balls.

    Hope D Rose gets back so Coach Thibbs and the rest of the bulls can challenge the Champs

  11. Zynthax says:

    Kyrie Irving is much more rounded player. I’d go for Kyrie here.

  12. pat says:

    Who wrote this article!!?? if anyone knows basketball you can never compare these two. Irving is not even close to derrick rose

  13. Max says:

    Rose vs Westbrook would be a better matchup.
    Rose pre-injury had the explosion, quickness and athelticism that you don’t see as much in kyrie but alot of in westbrook.

    As for Rose vs Irving I would definitely pick Rose.

  14. Kander111 says:

    People are prisoners of the moment. Irving is nice, no doubt…that being said, Rose would scorch the kid.

  15. BeeQAL says:

    The one thing that immediately struck me upon reading the title is: really? With all due respect to Irving because he is undoubtedly nice but he is definitely not in the same sentence as Derrick Rose. Heck, there are too many great PGs that I wouldn’t hesitate to put ahead of Irving at this point in this career i.e. CP3, Rondo, Tony Parker, Russell Westbrook.

    Irving is definitely the flavor of the month at the moment but let’s not let this hype train continue for much longer. He has an enormous upside but not yet in the league of elite NBA PGs. Personally, I would take Damien Lillard over him also.

    Derrick Rose was, and hopefully still is, beast. Irving is great, but not elite… yet.

  16. bryte says:

    drose hands down

  17. Hm says:

    Kyrie Irving would easily win. A better match-up would be Kyrie versus CP3.

    • the return is coming says:

      that’s just ridiculous.. did you see derrick destroy him last year? you have to remember he was MVP and the most dominate PG in the league.. he dragged the bulls to the best record in the NBA the last two years and dragged them to the Eastern Conference Finals two years ago.. not to mention the bulls have never missed the playoffs with him on the team.. Kyrie plays for a horrible team and puts up good numbers (nowhere close to great) and his team is nowhere close to even a .500 record let alone the playoffs.. OVERRATED! talk when Kyrie is ever playing in May

      • Alex R says:

        He never played kyrie last year

      • Hm says:

        I don’t really care about MVP awards. I don’t think he deserved it either, but that goes for a lot of guys who win it. The Bulls dragged themselves to a conference finals, considering they were the best defensive team in the NBA.

        Getting a little tired of Rose fans who ignore how good that team was.

      • Hm says:

        Also, I’m talking one-on-one. Rose has great handles and he’s an explosive player (was?), but he doesn’t have inhuman handles like Kyrie or CP3, nor does he have their finesse. Purely aesthetically, I would enjoy a Kyrie versus CP3 match-up more.

  18. d'RoseFan says:

    D’Rose all the way !!!!!

  19. rafa says:

    wow u all know that much abut bouncing ball. are u all coaches and managers?
    just wonder where that knowledge comes from?

  20. 123 says:

    nah.. a healthy rose vs parker would be the best. both love to attack the paint and it will be a battle of SPEED! suprised to read about pac and may here though

  21. Duv says:

    Steve, save the boxing comparisons for Pacers games

  22. bong says:

    IT should be…

    RONDO VS CP3 and of course

  23. Jag says:

    D rose cannot be compared with anybody. When he comes back fully fit and recovered from a devastating knee injury, he will take bulls to the finals and make them champions which k irving cannot do with Cavs on his own. In a nutshell, D rose is far more superior to K irving.

  24. timoten says:

    i am sick and tired of all this kyrie talk…. oh my goodness. the guy is averaging 20pts/5ast on an awful team. he’s gonna be great but right now please lets hold off on this KYRIE THE BEST PG TODAY!!! quotes…. crikey…

  25. AreyouSerious? says:

    Rose may be good and all that but i see Kyrie has way more potential now than rose and coming from an ACL injury is pretty serious and difficult so if this ever happens i’m sticking with Kyrie

  26. iSHAQ or SHAQTOLOGY says:

    MAYWEATHER is chicken out to PACMAN…. too scared…
    it will not be IRVING vs ROSE…
    that should be IRVING vs WALL…


    • shaqstradamus says:

      yeah i agree it will be IRVING vs WALL =prolific scorer
      but i will go with ROSE vs WESTBROOK = for being athletic and sensational..

  27. Bruce says:

    people seems to forget how good rose really is before he got injured……….

  28. Junior says:

    D rose all the way better player overall and better Basketball IQ…….

  29. Chiraq says:

    Rose will destroy kyrie. lets not forget he shutdown every great point guard in the league when he was healthy ( Rondo, Paul, Westbrook, Wall, Parker, Williams) #TheReturn.

    • Alex R says:

      Lets not forget Kyrie has hit 6 game winning jump shots, won the bbva mvp last year, won the 3pt contest, scored 20 in the fourth against OKC, Crossed the heck outta Brandon Knight, and scored 41 against the knicks.

      • HARDHOOPER says:

        Kyrie is very good but Rose is great. You dont become the youngest MVP ever for no reason. Not to mention Rose has dominated EVERY elite PG in the league and Rose is the better defender by far. Compare blocks, steals and how many points have been scored on each.

    • Heat says:

      Rose hasn’t shut down anyone

  30. Timmy says:

    I love D-Rose’s play style, but I’d have to give it to Irving if it’s 1v1.

  31. okc81 says:

    derric rose is the best player

  32. bitch please says:

    good match up

  33. austin says:

    one of the idiotic match ups you could think of….. Derrick Rose hands down
    Derrick is faster stronger a better scorer lets not mention that DRose was the MVP 2011-2012 season

  34. cool matchup too bad he cant come back soon he is a beastly player

  35. Byrd says:

    Irving would win that clash right now we would have to wait until he is 100%. Maybe next season

    • GKjgalgjklag says:

      that’s stupid compare only when irving brings up his freakin team the best pg matchups is CP vs D rose that’s like the Wade vs. Lebron before

  36. lmao basketball is waaay different than boxing…that being said….rose and irving can meet like 4 times a year cause they are on the same conference

    mayweather and pacquiao might never face each other or might even be once in a lifetime if mayweather starts manning up and stops chickening out lol

    why compare boxing to basketball they’re way different sports lol

    also, I would pick Irving over rose…mainly because hes a way more prolific scorer (my opinion)

    • you're stupid says:

      They’re not comparing sports they’re comparing the matchup only from the amount of times it has happened. You’re pathetic.

  37. Kent Catch A Break says:

    The only thing I see the most near comparison of Rose-Irving clash and Mayweather-Paquiao bout is…. That those matches may NEVER happened..

  38. Really? says:

    Wow I never really thought of that matchup, dang that would be a great one.