February 16, 2013

D-Rose: To Play or Not Play, That is the Question

By - Jaquan Murphy

Bulls star point guard Derrick Rose recently mentioned the possibility of not returning at any point during the 2012-13 season. That comment has sparked debates everywhere about whether the better decision for Rose is to sit or play.

Photo by: Charles Rex Arbogast
The answer is actually pretty simple.

Rose should just sit the entire season and worry about coming back as the same explosive, game-changing, dominant point guard he was before the injury. Granted, that would basically end Chicago's chances of winning a title this year and disappoint many fans who bought tickets to a Bulls game just to see D-Rose, but the decision whether to play or not poses an even bigger question; what's a year to a career?

Derrick Rose has it all right now. He is the face of the Chicago Bulls. In the basketball world, he is the biggest thing in Chicago since Michael Jordan. Big shoes to fill, but he has done an admirable job. And he will continue to do that if he takes the time to let his knee fully heal so he can be that player that can carry a team to a ring.

In addition to being the face of a franchise, let's not forget the endorsements. Rose has deals and affiliations with Adidas, Powerade, Wilson, Skullcandy and 2K Sports.

Now why should he risk all of that? What does he get from rushing back and risking suffering another injury to his knee? Sure, there is a list of players who have had major knee injuries and returned pretty strong, but the list of prematurely ended careers due to knee injuries is significantly longer.

But what about the fans and their entertainment? Tough players play through injuries. What about the team?

Those arguments are valid. Fans work hard to be able to afford tickets to see their favorite team or player play, and pro athletes owe it to their fans to play and play hard. But dedicated fans want the best for their team and their favorite players. Rose would love to be out there putting on a show for the fans, but in his defense, if he huts his knee again, how many of those fans are going to financially support him the way his salary for the Bulls does?

Tough players do play through injuries. Smart players play through injuries but know when to sit it out. Certain injuries just cannot be played through. A player, especially one whose game is predicated on basic speed and explosion, cannot play through an injury that hampers his ability to have a quick first step, make cuts and explode to the rim. Even though Derrick Rose at 70% may be better than 90% of the point guards in the league, no one wants to see a 70% D-Rose for the rest of his career.

The team? They are doing fine without him. No, they are not as good as they would be if Rose were in the lineup, but they are fairly solid nonetheless. Solid to the tune of 5th in the East at the All-Star break. Everyone knows that defense wins championships, and Chicago plays great defense -- with or without D-Rose.

Let the man heal. When healthy, Rose is easily a top 5 point guard in the league. Even with the plethora of rising stars at the position, the NBA needs Derrick Rose to be 100%. The Bulls need him healthy so they can compete with teams like Miami and New York.

What happened to the phrase "next man up?" Why is there a rush to get the star player back? If I played for the Bulls, I would take the rush on D-Rose as an insult. I would feel like no one believes in the team unless Rose is playing. Yes, he makes the club better, but at the end of the day, there are 14 other guys on the roster and they need to be able to perform and win regardless. If Derrick Rose leaves that big of a void, that is a reflection on the front office for not putting enough talent together to make sure the team can win with or without their star.

So sit the season out Derrick. The cons outweigh the pros for a return this year. Think about your future. Does anyone really believe it's worth risking just for an outside chance to win it all this season? Just think, what's a year to a career?


  1. I'm with you. As much as I hate to say it, I think he just needs to wait until next season so he'll be at 100%. They're not winning the title this season with or without him.

  2. Out of HIS OWN MOUTH Rose said he can't dunk/has lost some explosiveness, so he might as well just shut it down for the season. Guess Adidas was a little early with those comeback ads. Lol

  3. He might not ever be the same. I hope thats not the case though. He's one of my favorite plsyers.