Bulls point guard Derrick Rose has sat out the last two practices in the lead up to USA Basketball‘s exhibition game tonight against the Dominican Republic at Madison Square Garden. He’s said to be experiencing soreness in his surgically repaired knees, but is expected to play tonight, according to National Team coach Mike Krzyzewski.
By way of Marc Stein and Mike Mazzeo at ESPN, a source familiar with Rose’s condition told ESPNChicago.com’s Nick Friedell Rose has been bothered by knee soreness since his return to the floor Saturday night during the USA’s 95-78 win over Brazil.
This comes after a number of positive reviews about Rose in the lead-up to their first international exhibition. Assistant coach on the and Syracuse men’s coach Jim Boeheim called D-Rose the most impressive guy at USA Basketball camp. Coach K said he was “better than four years ago.” He showed his explosiveness at the Basketball Showcase, and USA Basketball hopeful Andre Drummond called him “A Ferrari amongst Nissans.”
Rose said he didn’t have any fear even after tearing the ACL in his left knee in Game 1 of the 2012 Playoffs, and the medial meniscus in his right knee in November of 2013 after sitting out the entire 2012-13 season.
Rose believes, “everything will go my way,” and this comeback is “totally different” than last year. But knees can be fickle — ask Brandon Roy — and some Chicago fans probably wonder why Rose is participating with USA Basketball at all.
Mike Krzyzewski said during an interview with ESPN’s “Mike and Mike” on Monday he had planned on sitting Rose out of practice on Monday and Tuesday anyway, since he’s been going so hard in the lead-up to the Brazil game. Coach K said after the team’s Rose-less practice session on Tuesday at the Brooklyn’s practice facility, he expects Rose and injured forward/center DeMarcus Cousins to play tonight at the Garden.
Sam Smith of Bulls.com painted a much more relaxed and optimistic picture of a loose Rose, enjoying his time off and laughing about it when he spoke with NBA TV.
“I feel great actually,” Rose said. “My body is good. I’m not aching. So that’s a good sign. Just trying to take it day by day. Today, I’m not practicing, just getting a little bit of rest. Getting my legs under me a little bit more. Today is like a recovery day for me. “Just want to thank the staff for that.”
The 24 minutes Rose played against Brazil — he only scored seven points — were the most he’s played in almost a year, so a little soreness is understandable. Then again, after back-to-back major knee surgeries before turning 25 and a game that relies on a lot lower-body torque, it’s worth pondering whether the FIBA World Cup in Spain is a sound preparation for Rose’s 2014-15 NBA season.
Should Rose play tonight?
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