EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – The U.S. National Team continues to take precautions with Derrick Rose, who sat out a second straight day of practice on Tuesday.
After Monday’s visit to the U.S. Military Academy, Team USA got back to work at the Brooklyn Nets’ practice facility. Rose was in practice gear and did some light work, but did not participate in the full practice, which included some scrimmaging.
Rose’s status for Wednesday’s exhibition against the Dominican Republic at Madison Square Garden (7 p.m. ET, NBA TV) hasn’t been determined. He started at point guard against Brazil on Saturday and should do the same when the World Cup begins on Aug. 30, but if he plays Wednesday, he could be coming off the bench.
“Chances are he won’t [start],” USA Basketball managing director Jerry Colangelo said Tuesday, “because the rule is if you don’t practice the day before, you don’t start.”
That rule “is just kind of an informal thing,” Colangelo added.
Asked if he knew if he would be playing Wednesday, Rose said, “Hopefully, I am.”
“Today was just another rest day,” he added, saying that it wasn’t planned. “I’m just seeing how I feel every day. There’s nothing wrong with rest. It’s not like it’s the season, so I’m not worried about it.”
So, there’s no need for panic, Chicago. Rose has played just 10 games over the last two seasons and has had surgeries on both knees. The status of his comeback was the biggest focus of the U.S. team’s first week of training in Las Vegas. But he has looked ridiculously quick and explosive every time he has taken the floor. And he doesn’t feel the need to push himself every day with the Bulls’ season still 10 weeks away.
“I’m really happy where I’m at right now, health-wise and recovering very quickly,” Rose said. “I’m just trying to take my time and get rest, because we have a long schedule ahead of us. I’m just trying to get as much rest as possible.”
There’s still a question of how much he’ll play for the National Team. In World Cup pool play, the U.S. will play five games in six days. That run is just 11 days away, but Colangelo isn’t thinking that far ahead in regard to Rose’s workload.
“Right now, there’s no issue here,” Colangelo said. “If he needs down time, this is a good time for it. He can rest and we kind of move on from there.”