HANG TIME, Texas — LeBron James to Miami. Chris Paul to the L.A. Clippers. Dwight Howard to the L.A. Lakers.
So who’s next to spin the wheel of free agent fortune and plot his escape to greener pastures?
Would you believe Derrick Rose?
That’s the latest white-hot offering from former Magic coach-turned-media-flamethrower Stan Van Gundy, whom we’ve got to figure owns considerable stock in a Molotov cocktail factory or is auditioning to replace Mrs. O’Leary’s cow as the most famous fire-starter in Chicago history.
Speaking on AM-740’s The Game in Orlando, the former Magic coach sent an ill breeze through the Windy City by suggesting that there would come a time when Rose would look to leave Chicago.
“I think the interesting one coming up in the future is going to be Derrick Rose,” Van Gundy said. “I think Derrick Rose is a great, great representative of our league, and he’s a great player. And he’s got good players around him, very good players around him, but if (the Bulls) can’t get another star there for him is he eventually going to look around and say, ‘Hey, I’ve got to work this out on my own and I’ve got to find somehow to get somewhere else so that I will have a chance to play with another star.’ The league has changed.”
Rose, who is rehabbing the torn ACL he suffered in Game 1 of the playoffs against Philadelphia last spring, has never even hinted at making a head-fake toward the door. In fact, since signing his five-year, $90-million contract extension, he has repeatedly said that he wants and plans to finish his career in Chicago. What’s more, in the past two seasons with coach Tom Thibodeau at the helm, Rose has won an MVP award and twice led his team to the NBA’s best regular-season record.
In his defense, Van Gundy was talking about a possible future scenario if Rose were unable to win a championship with the pieces that can be put around him in Chicago and was using the 2012 championship by the Heat as an example. (more…)