My first reaction was the same as everyone else’s: “You’ve got to be kidding me!”
On the first day of training camp, Derrick Rose took a Taj Gibson elbow to the face, and subsequently will undergo surgery for a broken orbital bone. His timetable to return is still in question — facial fractures in the NBA can leave a player sidelined anywhere from a couple of games to a couple of months.
One thing is for certain, there’s a ton of speculation that Rose (who’s missed 212 of the Bulls’ last 312 games) will once again be in no rush to return. You can’t blame Rose for his injury history. It’s just really unfortunate that we’ve continuously been robbed of one of the league’s top talents time and time again. Where the blame does seem to fall on Rose is when it comes to both his lack of willingness to get back on the court before he’s 100%, and his passion for the game (and both go hand-in-hand).
On Media Day, Rose was much more willing to talk about his financial future than his basketball future, and he won’t even be a free agent until 2017.
“[I’m] making sure my family is financially stable, as far as seeing all the money that they’re passing out in this league,” said Rose — who’s made roughly $280 million in his career already from the Bulls and Adidas. “Just telling the truth. Just knowing that my day will be coming up soon, and it’s not for me. It’s for P.J. (Rose’s son) and his future. So that’s what I’m thinking about right now.”
With $280 mil in the bank, if Rose was already thinking about getting paid again in 2017 before getting injured, getting back on the court sounds like it’s pretty low on Rose’s to do list. I like D-Rose as a player and a person, but his growing reputation as a player that cares about money more than the game is becoming a reality.
Rose has made excuses to take more time coming back from knee injuries because he doesn’t want to “be at my son’s graduation all sore because of something I did in the past.” This isn’t exactly what the Bulls want to hear from their franchise player.
ESPN’s Sarah Spain (who’s based out of Chicago) half jokingly suggested that because this is Derrick Rose, he may sit the entire season so that his eye looks okay at his son’s graduation.
Jimmy Butler was asked his thoughts on Rose’s oddly premature focus on 2017 free agency — “He can talk unicorns and rainbows for all I care. Just help us win some basketball games,” he replied.
It looks like for the fifth season in a row, the former MVP is going to have trouble doing just that. You don’t get paid the big bucks to sulk in reoccurring injuries, something Rose may want to consider before 2017 arrives.
If I’m the Bulls, this is the last straw. Prove that you can be ready for opening night on October 27, or we just may not have any money left for you in 2017 — if we haven’t moved on from you before then.
Find me on Twitter @julianedlow