Will Derrick Rose Come Out Smelling Like A Rose?
“Derrick has had some really good moments for us,” coach Fred Hoiberg said. “He has won some big games for us this year. We trust him out there. I know his teammates do as well.”
Trust is a question of knowing that you can count on your man to come through. And although Derrick Rose has a track record that warrants trust, his current streak does not support it.
Rose’s 2015 season began at the Bulls’ training camp, where Derrick Rose for the first time since 2011 was not rehabilitating an injury giving him an extra shot of confidence.
From there it went down hill, whether or not Rose “can hoop,” like he boasted is questionable these days. Rose has played in 12 of the Bulls’ first 14 games, and his greatness on the court has waned more than waxed.
Thursday’s Bulls lost to the Pacers 104-92 victory showed the absence of a big energy effort from the Bulls missing was the MJ fire and commitment from start to finish.
However, the fact remains that Rose still attracts more defensive attention than any other Bull. His 5.9 assists per game represent his best average since 2011-12 and his 2.6 turnovers per game represent his lowest average since his 2008-09 rookie season.
It wasn’t pretty watching Rose missing 12 of 16 shots in Friday’s loss to the Pacers to underscore his shooting troubles. At 36.3 percent, Rose is currently landing at his second-lowest percentage of his career. He’s 6-for-28 from 3-point range, a 21.4 percent representing a career-low.
Friday’s loss to the Pacers 104-92 victory showed the absence of a big energy effort from the Bulls; missing was the Michael Jordan fire and commitment from start to finish.
What’s scarier is that, Rose is down to 40.7 percent shooting (24-for-59) in the restricted area, per advanced stats at nba.com. In context, Oklahoma City Thunder star, Russell Westbrook is shooting 56.5 percent in the restricted with more than double the attempts at 77-for-136.
Hooping like Rose used to—finishing at the rim, once his signature is now a struggle.
Since the former NBA MVP suffered a left orbital fracture in practice when he caught an errant elbow from a teammate he’s complained that he hasn’t been seeing at his optimum vision, which can’t be overlooked. He has stated that each game played is a game behind him and he has to focus on improving his game going forward. However, late Friday Rose publicly announced his intention to work on his game Saturday, a Bulls’ off day.
Professionally, the Bulls franchise needs more from Rose, who is averaging a career-low 13.6 points. However, healing is something personal and individual. So we will just have to see whether or not Rose comes out smelling like a rose.
So what does this mean for the Bulls?
Kirk Hinrich had treatment Saturday on a hip pointer that knocked him out of Friday’s loss midway through the fourth quarter. Hinrich is 9-for-13 from 3-point range in the six games he has played since missing five games with a sore toe.
Aaron Brooks is set to miss his fourth straight game Monday because of a strained left hamstring, so even more responsibility falls on Rose. To date, Rose has posted just one game — the Nov. 16 home victory over the Pacers — in which he shot 50 percent (9 of 18 in 96-95 triumph where he took just two shots in the last 101/2 minutes).
Rose has explained that his orbital fracture has challenged his game, that it’s a different type injury effecting his performance in a different way than his othet injuries. Yet he feels strongly that it’s all coming together. He said to reporters after the game, “All of it’s going to come,” It’s the first time I’ve had surgery on my face, so that’s something different. The depth perception of the rim is a little bit thrown off, so I’m dealing with that. I’m happy with the way I’ve been working out, getting the most out of every day. I’ve been going hard.”
We have to give it to him, he’s remained positive and on a high note despite his shooting deficit.
He could really use a break like getting some easy points. Also isn’t getting to the line would help. Right now he’s averaging 2.6 free throws per game, also a career-low.
Prior to his off game season, Rose has been heavily guarded by the competition seeking to stop him from getting to the rim. Rose said. “It’s like a contain type of blitz where Pau (Gasol) keeps getting open shots. On any pick-and-roll I have, the big is going to have the shot more often than I do.”
Regrettably for the Bulls, at the moment that seems to be the best option leaving the season is up for grabs. But let’s get through Monday first.