Chicago Bulls: Derrick Rose In MVP Form For USA Team
By Mike Elworth: Owner and Publisher/Hoopstuff…
As I was born in Chicago, live in Chicago and have 25 years on my belt as a fan of the Chicago Bulls, even though it is my job to cover the NBA with no bias, I care more about the health and play of Derrick Rose than if the USA wins gold in Spain. I’m sorry, I may sound like a traitor, but the Bulls are my team and I haven’t seen a Bulls championship since I was 9. The Bulls winning a title depends on the health of Derrick Rose and if he is healthy and in MVP form, the Bulls are 1 of the 2 best teams in the Eastern Conference and have their best chance of winning the East since that title when I was 9, so yes I am watching the games more to see how Rose plays and how he carries himself on the court more than Team USA winning. Regardless, he looks excellent.
He is playing off the bench for maybe 15-20 minutes per game, but when he plays he looks like, well, Derrick Rose. He has his quickness, confidence and athleticism again. I say that because Derrick Rose wasn’t playing like himself in those 10 games he just played for Chicago, I believe it was a confidence issue. He looked apprehensive and rarely dunked, but watching him play against Finland and Turkey, that isn’t an issue for him. His stats aren’t much, but stats mean little in international play this is about winning for your country, so he is playing team ball, but there are 2 plays that I saw that proved that Rose is himself. Against Finland, there was an isolation play with Rose at the 3 point line and he just ran by their point guard who had no chance and got a wide open dunk; it was pretty. In today’s game, when the team was really having trouble scoring (they were losing at half), Derrick had this look on this face, one I have seen 50 times, he was angry and talking to site VP Josh I said, watch he is going right to the rim; I was right, he got to the basket and was fouled. That is his “my turn” look, when he sees that his team has to score and he makes it his responsibility. Those 2 are vintage, MVP winning Derrick Rose plays. Watching him defend, I could also tell that his side to side quickness was incredible, so when it comes to athleticism, Rose looks elite. There is just one thing in his game I can see that he has to work on, as his shooting form isn’t pretty, which is odd because it looked excellent when he played those 10 games. However, Derrick Rose is going to have a big, big season.
I can admit that Rose won’t win MVP, because even at his best he is no better than the 3rd best player in the league, as it is LeBron James and Kevin Durant 1a and 1b and there isn’t anyone close to them, but it looks like we will be looking at an excellent Derrick Rose this season and if he plays 75-82 games, he will be 3rd, 4th or 5th in MVP voting. Rose and the Bulls will win the Eastern Conference this season.