Being Derrick Rose these days is both burdensome and a blessing. As the face of his city’s sports scene, Rose is a product of fame, but also a product of those same Chicago streets painted in the news as becoming America’s version of the Middle East. His talent allowed him to escape said scene and not only become one of the NBA’s premiere superstars, but, more importantly to him, ensured his loved ones an option for a much more Utopian lifestyle.
Then, there’s his imobilzing and well documented injury which ended his playoffs this past season and threatens most of the 2012-2013 campaign. Then, and to added an obstacle on top of a situation which will already take hours of pain, tears and sweat, there’s the realization we likely won’t see Rose return to his freak-of-nature self until the 2013-2014 season. Yep, a season and a half gone.
With such in mind and the fact Derrick has always presented himself as a quiet and humble dude, it’s no surprise the 2011 MVP became emotional at the unveiling for his Rose 3 adidas sneaker. Chicago is a beautiful city defined by the most repugnant of scenarios. And while it is legitimate to an extent that Rose’s tears work wonders in a marketing scheme tailored around promoting a product linked to an injured athlete; the moment is real. It has to be. At the very least, I hope it is.
Moments such as these will continue to drive home the stamp D-Rose could indeed be the most “likable” star in a league with several and that “he gets it.” That’s fine and if judging a player on those standards prove who are the good guys in the NBA, “Pooh” may very well sit atop the list. Just know there’s an internal struggle happening in his head much more relevant than a “who’s the coolest” list. The struggle to return to MVP form. The struggle to see his city remedy itself. And the struggle of what he can actually do to help.
I’ll say it again. Derrick Rose’s life is burdensome and a blessing.