I’m going to say what every Chicago Bulls fan is thinking and wants to say, but they are too scared to say due to the backlash.
Derrick Rose should be traded.
Not only should he be traded, it should be done instead of amnestying Carlos Boozer. But before you climb up on your “but Derrick is the King of Chicago” high horse, give me a chance to explain why.
I’ve been a Bulls fan ever since seeing them lose to the Detroit Pistons in the 1990 playoffs. I was a Bulls fan before I was a Michael Jordan fan. I’ve literally grown up with the Bulls. I’ve celebrated the rings and the 72 wins, and I’ve face palmed during the Tim Floyd era. I’ve seen it all as a Bulls fan however nothing is more frustrating than watching my Bulls suffer at the hands of their injury riddled superstar Derrick Rose. Rose has spent the majority of the last two seasons as a spectator due to two truly unfortunate and serious knee injuries, which has left his Bulls in unfortunate and serious situations both times.
Injuries to star players is not something new that only started happening when Rose went down, as long as there’s been basketball there’s been injuries to basketball players but the faster the game gets the more injuries we see. Rose rehabbed like a mad man after his first knee surgery, he was dedicated, emotional and Adidas even made mini movies about him to inspire us all to stick by his side… oh, and to keep buying his shoes. And it worked. We all bought in and we all wanted the recently crowned MVP to rise up from his injury and comeback to dominate the league and win one. Unfortunately basketball isn’t a fairy tale and just when Rose was starting to show us signs that he might still be that amazing player we all remembered, he was struck down with yet another knee injury this time in the other knee. So as Bulls fans we’ve sat by and watched our Bulls spend the majority of the season battling, clawing and fighting their way to be a middle of the pack play-off team. Not a title contender, an average play-off team. Why? Because for the second year in a row our “superstar” is riding the pine when it matters the most, and against a Washington Wizards team the Bulls should have easily destroyed but instead it’s been an early exit from the playoffs. And I’m going to say it, it’s Rose’s fault.
He’s not there when it really matters and as Bulls fans we have to sit by and spend another year wondering what if. I’m mad and I feel bad for guys like Joakim Noah, DJ Augustin and Taj Gibson who have given their all night in and night out, and now they face the disappointment of making the playoffs and not having the one thing Rose could give them that they need so much, scoring. When Gar Foreman and John Paxson start talking about how to improve the team for next season, they need to forget the fan reaction and that Rose is from Chicago. They need to remember that the only thing that sports fans really respect is winning. We’re not fans because we hope that one day our team will finish just outside the playoffs, we’re fans because we want to see our team win so we can celebrate it and look forward to defending it just like the players on our team. My point is that as long as the star of this team is recovering from two knee injuries, how can we have faith that he’s going to be able to play a whole season without getting injured again? I’m worried that Derrick Rose is becoming Michael Redd. Is he going to be the player we tell our kids about by starting the sentence with “if he hadn’t had those knee problems…”?
So you shouldn’t be focused on whether Carmelo Anthony will come to Chicago, you should be more worried about what Carmelo thinks of Rose and his knees. Because if Rose goes down again, does Carmelo think that this is a championship calibre team without Rose? Maybe, but if Carmelo doesn’t think he can win in Chicago without a healthy Rose, why would any other big name free agent come to the Bulls either? The answer is, they wouldn’t. So keep Boozer, he might not play defense and he might not even have a strong offensive game but do you know what he does do? He plays. He’s not a risk. You know that he will give you 15 points and 9 rebounds a game. Sure he’ll complain about not playing in the fourth quarter, but at least he could play if you wanted him to. If the choice was mine to make I’d say thanks to Derrick Rose for all that he’s done for the Bulls and the city of Chicago, and trade him to someone that’s willing to risk it all on a former MVP that might just make me pay for all that I’ve just written. To be honest, I hope he does.