Long before I was a fading blog star who wrote often (and then only occasionally, and now a little more often than occasionally) about the Cubs I was literally a world famous NBA writer who got paid to do it.Â I tell you this not to brag (because it was the late ’90s and there were like 1,200 people on the Interwebs), but so you will know that when I choose to write a hot take about something going on in the NBA it must be pretty goddamned hot.
Derrick Rose is not a pussy.
Derrick Rose does not, not want to play basketball.
Derrick Rose is not, nor has ever been, particularly articulate.
Many in the media, not all, who know this, are just piling on because they are assholes.
Derrick played through a shit-ton of injuries in 2011-2012, which no doubt contributed to his knee finally buckling in a first round playoff game and him tearing his ACL.
He was due to miss 12 months, which would effectively cost him the entire 2012-2013 season.Â It did, and yet, because people who write about sports are the worst, after about eight months they decided he should probably be playing again.Â Hey, Adrian Peterson came back in nine months, AND THAT WAS MANLY FOOTBALL!Â Hey, Iman Shumpert came back in 10 months, and he was terrible and his back was killing him because his body wasn’t ready, but…MANLY!
So Derrick did come back for 2013-2014, and just a few games into the season tore the meniscus on his other knee.Â When you have that injury there are two ways to treat it.Â The way that gets you back fastest is to have your doctor cut off the torn part of the meniscus.Â A few weeks later you are playing again, and it doesn’t hurt, but your knee bones are rubbing together and you’re going to get arthritis and shorten your career.Â Or, you have your doctor sew it back together and you have to wait for it to heal.Â That’s a year.
Derrick was 25, and made the smart choice.Â The Bulls, who have him signed long term agreed with his choice.Â But the media went all caveman on him, and Russell Westbrook came back faster and…shut up.
Now he’s back, his knees are healed, the Bulls are the deepest team in the league, and after an up and down summer spent playing in the FIBA World Cup, Derrick looked great in preseason, and in the first game, until he landed on a guy’s foot and sprained his ankle.Â He stayed in, ran it off LIKE A MAN then sprained the other one.
Shit happens.Â It’s basketball.Â You sprain ankles, you jam fingers and you get crabs in the back room of strip clubs.
Derrick missed a couple games, tried to play on it, then missed some more.
When asked about why he’s not playing more he said he’s thinking about his future (which is not a bad answer) and wants to be healthy enough to play with his kid years from now (ehh…not a horrible answer) and to be healthy enough sit in meetings (what?)
It’s an answer to be mocked because it was not articulated well and ended up being kind of funny, but instead, Rose is being savaged…again, for not wanting to play.Â When he’s reasonably healthy, he plays, and ask the Pistons, when he’s reasonably healthy, he’s still pretty damned awesome.
It’s bullshit.Â It’s November.Â Almost six months left to go in the season.Â There’s nothing wrong with Derrick trying to ensure he’s actually healthy when the season ends and the playoffs start.
Let’s stop pretending he doesn’t want to play, or that he’s afraid.Â Dumb people believe this kind of shit.Â And worst of all, almost every media nitwit who writes or says it, knows it’s not true.Â It’s an easy target, and the media love an easy target.
So knock it off.