Don’t Blame It On Rio: Rose Sits, ‘Precaution’ That Revives Knee Issues

Derrick Rose’s return to action for the Chicago Bulls, one of the league’s compelling storylines as the 2013-14 season approaches, offered up its first plot twist Saturday.

Two weeks into the Bulls’ preseason grind of practices and games, Rose was held out against the Washington Wizards with soreness in his surgically repaired left knee. The game’s setting – in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – merely added an exotic backdrop to what the team claimed was a precautionary, and not unexpected, move.

Never mind what Rose’s absence Saturday meant to the folks in Rio, one of the NBA’s global exhibitions and presumably a little more important than run-of-the-mill October games. What matters is how Rose, his knee and the team respond once they get back to work this week at their Berto Center practice facility in Chicago’s north suburbs.

GM Gar Forman was urging fans and media to remain calm, minimizing the “soreness” that apparently developed in Rose’s knee at practice Friday. Said Forman, as reported by K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune:

“It’s not a major red flag or a huge concern. He’s got some soreness and we wanted to be conservative with it at this point.”

Being conservative, though, is what has so many fans on high alert right now.

John Paxson, the team’s vice president of basketball operations, treated Saturday’s decision as standard operating procedure for any player returning from surgery as significant as Rose’s. Echoing what medical experts inside and outside the Bulls’ organization have said – there would be good nights, not-so-good nights, sore nights and rusty nights for Rose – Paxson said: “We never anticipated a straight line.”

That, of course, was one argument for having Rose return last March or April even if it didn’t translate into a title run: Work through those ups and downs and get them out of the way before the new season. But the All-Star point guard, his advisors and the team played it cautiously, pushing that necessary part of Rose’s return to now.

Here’s Paxson’s comment to the Tribune about that:

“It’s irrelevant. The decision was made to not play last year and now we’re going through this. Our goal is this season, the regular season and getting to the playoffs. Nobody said this was going to be a straight line. The only way we can get to where we want to go is in this case being cautious and letting him get through this.”

Through the Bulls’ first two preseason games, vs. Indiana and Memphis, Rose had averaged about 20 minutes and 13 points, playing three shifts nightly. He looked quick and confident in his knee, limited mostly by some timing, conditioning and rust issues.

But now Rose’s game-to-game health and availability will be revived as the story of Chicago’s season, sparking a new round of hand-wringing by the public. Ready or not, Chicago opens the regular season Oct. 29 with a marquee game against LeBron James and the two-time champion Heat in Miami.

Any sort of here-today, out-tomorrow pattern for the team’s MVP, on top of Rose’s lost 2012-13 season, could scuttle the Bulls’ season before it begins. And push Chicagoans past the breaking point.

As for the fans in Brazil, one way to look at Saturday’s disappointment is to treat it as an authentic NBA experience. They got precisely what the crowds at United Center endured last season: Derrick Rose in repose.


  1. it had to happen says:

    His physical style always predestined him for a short career
    D. Rose has to change his playstyle ; forget insane explosiveness and play smoothly.
    He eventually will adapt, but only because he’s scared

  2. hardwood says:

    Its absolutely ridiculous reading peoples comments on here. People clearly don’t have a clue about how serious of an injury he has had to endure. A full rupture to your ACL ligament leaves you never the same. not to mention the possibility of damage to other areas of the knee. Meniscus may have been torn and that alone can cause long term problems. There is no one more dejected than Rosse himself and to listen to you morons talk about how this affects you and your morale is disgusting. Not to mention fans selfishness regarding how long it is taking him to return and to action and full strength. Everyone has their own agenda, but Rose needs to worry about himself and his health first and foremost. If he needs to sit out parts of the season then that’s exactly what he should do. Good luck to Rose, and everyone out there who thinks they have the answer to what he should and shouldn’t do. GFY

  3. Stop freaking out says:

    Rose is saying he could’ve played but management said that they’re holding him out because it’s precautionary.

    Shumpert and Rubio both had knee soreness when they tore their acl. I think that it happens to every player because they havent played in a long time. Rose will be fine and I expect him to be ready for the next game.

  4. Absurd says:

    Why do all the negative comments come from heat fans?! Because you guys are scared and disrespectful! Just stop being a hater and enjoy basketball! Let those players heal themselves!

  5. sanjay says:

    why go for surgery when they cant solve the problem even after such a long time? All the muscle injuries will heal naturally if given sufficient time. And in this case had sufficient time to address the knee problem. I just don’t get this!
    His method is also all wrong. There is no need to pound the pain to score. Does he have other weapons? Or he is just basket attack kind of player? I have no idea how can some body get in to pain for moving the basketball and body contact wont tear your legs for sure( we know nba has lot of body contact). Unless someone goes for leg tackle, you cant have this kind of injury( Or is it something with these tall guys eating too much red meat. Hence being stiff? Or is it more prominent to non white- american as NBA is dominated by them or it is due to their thin legs? These days they are built like an ox! So upper built 100 kg plus body putting weight on the lean legs could be one issue)

    The amount of knee and ankle injuries to nba players is unheard in other games in other parts of the world. The soccer players work more than nba players and so does regular hockey players and they barely have these preposterous injuries( tendon is ridiculous but knee is also rare!)

    And it looks due to their vertical leap and drop at the basket. But this is perplexing as the nike( they use mostly nike) NBA shoes have more cushion than the regular shoes!

    Or it could be also be due to way too many games? It is better the league take a look in to this! It could be combination of all these factors!
    The amount of injuries just seems one too many these days.
    A player like rose not playing in his peak is sad for the league!

  6. clippers fan lob city says:

    You guys do know that its preseason and the games dont matter yet.

    • LBJKIN6JAMES says:

      you do know that its 2 weeks until the season starts right ?
      …having “knee soreness” in the same knee he tore his acl in a pre-season game where he only plays about half his usual minutes and at about half his usual speed is usually not a good sign, especially for Rose who has shown he is just not that mentally tough…

  7. JP says:

    people will forget this guy nobody talkin about rose that much..i’m just focusin seeing heat repeat for 3rd titles, rockets get better, thunders, and knicks

  8. JP says:

    i think rose has weak knees he might as well retire n he still not at full strength..rose just not tough enough or strong enough to play ball!

  9. D Rose is back says:

    heat fans only come on rose articles because there scared of him when he is healthy so there happy when he is hurt, i agree with him sitting out that preseason game and take his time on his come back because ones he is fully healthy miami heat bulls will be your worst nightmare

    • Kome the Black dumba says:

      I understand Heat fans are dumb but I don’t think they are ever scared of Derrick Rose. Remember how Lebron destroy Rose in the playoffs before Dirk destroy Lebron? Rose is a good player but I don’t even rank him as par with a prime D.wade.

      • LBJKIN6JAMES says:

        … Bottom line is that Heat fans were never scared of Rose at all. He is not even the PG in the league, let alone the best player.
        Only team in the east that can upset the Heat is the Indiana Pacers.

  10. neal says:

    too many exhibitions nothing to prove we already now without the refs help (miami needs it) we are the best in the East) so why play let”s start the season!!!!!

  11. heatnation says:

    16 more days to go before regular season and still suffer for injury….sit down and chillax one more season and you will be totally gone in nba…

    • LBJKIN6JAMES says:

      That is a good point that a lot of people fail to recognize. The fact that there have been MANY superstars in this league who have ended their careers very early despite the potential they had. One more year off and D. Rose could be the next Greg Oden.

      • Bigwes95 says:

        I wouldn’t say Greg Oden. Oden’s knees weren’t built for the NBA while the rest of his body was. Rose is though. He just had some bad luck, as much as I don’t like Rose because he does get overrated and people think he’s perfect, he was still a top 5 player in the league and has a completely different injury than Oden. I hope he comes back and stays healthy, but he won’t be sitting out the whole year like Oden, Oden HAD to sit out the whole season to be at all able to get on the court, Rose’s was more of precaution.

  12. Edgars says:

    I started watching basketball in times when Michael Jordan dominated the league, that obviously makes me a huge fan of Chicago Bulls and our latest superstar- Derrick Rose.
    I understand frustration of all the fans, but sarcastic and cynical comments and thoughts are not going help Derrick get back to hes best, are not going to help Chicago and fans stay united with common goal in mind.
    Lets just appreciate all the good things we have and get behind team and Derrick when things are not going so good. Support more, criticize less.
    If you think you cant do that, maybe you should just support Miami Heat. Or wherever is going to be next ‘super’ team after 2014 season.

  13. dialer says:

    Okay, Mr. Doctor Memphis Truth.
    Heat fan forever! Go heat! Three-peat!

  14. KingKong says:

    Derrick Rose will play in the opening night no doubt about it, then he will take the rest of the season off to heal the knee completely.

  15. MemphisTruth says:

    The surgery lingers on, much like Noah’s foot issues. The post injury taking the pounding Rose puts on it )as when he was 18 and hand stiffness in his joints, ect. from over practice, Rose over works himself, and its no issue with Europe its that he wants to play 35+++++ minutes vs Miami, Miami is the opposite of Lebron. He DOES NOT want a super team. He does not want a light shoe. He does not want to recruit friends to join Chicago, he would welcome teammates but this is the only man in the last 5 years to win the MVP not Lebron, Durant yet to win one. Lebron consistent, with his supporting cast who would not be. Rose took a MVP and plans to take more, if theres some soreness after having your knee cut open and some work done, despite months of feeling normal anyone who has had a broken rib or tailbone or lingering injuries understands it comes and goes. Id much rather him sit tonight than vs. Miami he was in Rio so again no harm to Rio, the flights can really cause swelling, etc. D Rose will be play the next game, soreness is soreness its that simple, be precautious while the record does not matter. Some teams seem to be throwing games, at least Rose wants to go for all fans.

  16. kitty says:

    Derek Rose should take the year off to recover from this knee soreness.

  17. okc2014 says:

    I think there is too much panic and too much thought into this. Let the guy heal, let the guy acknowledge when he needs to sit it out and take a rest. It’s just the pre-season. What nobody wants (even his competition), is for him to overdo it then re-injure himself. Take a chill pill people.

  18. Willi Billy Imre Sinte says:

    I get the part of being precautionary. I totally understand it from a teamstandpoint. But still I dont like it. Most of the people that came to that game will never again have the opportunity to watch an NBA game live.
    I dont want Rose to reinjure himself but I think he shouldve played at least 2 minutes and the fans would have understood.
    Its very disappointing. And its not cool do compare it to the fans in Chicago. They have at least 82 games a season to watch the Bulls. The fans in Brazil dont. Im from Europe and so far couldnt afford to go to an NBA preseason game so I understand what a lot of fans in Brazil feel. Perhaps most Americans dont know what a luxury it is that you have.
    Appreciate it and enjoy it.

  19. UnkleDaddy says:

    It’s not a major red flag, really. He’s been out for well over a year. I wish him the best, I do. But, I don’t see him being the player he was, see *Penny Hardaway *Steve Francis or *Gilbert Arenas. I hope I’m wrong.

    • Paul says:

      Those guys were older when they got hurt tho, Rose is still young.

      • hes young…so that means he still can be the player he was…but it’ll take a long time

      • abisan says:

        I wish all the best to Rose in the future but unfortunatelly this type of injury does not care about the age. The history is full of simiral cases. Read some articles with medical explanation and you can find out by yourself. Since his strong point was quickness and not the shot, he will struggle a lot in the future against young guards. He will never be the same player he was. Saying this I am scared thath he will be just an average player and nothing more. His statistics from now and one will depend just from the number of actions that will be designed and forced for him trying to push the business as far as possible. The question is just when the management will realise that an era which doesn’t developed enough to produce a title is ending. Sorry, but that is the reality.

    • LBJKIN6JAMES says:

      100% agree

      Rose’s career is obviously a long way from done, I’m not going to exaggerate this situation and say he’s’ finished’ but I agree that he will not & cannot be the same player he once was both physically & mentally.
      I don’t think Rose had the mental toughness to begin with, & now the injury has taken a psychological toll on him.. he definitely wont be the same for atleast a year and might never get back to his ‘mvp’ status again … sad but true