Derrick Rose was not expected to participate in the recruiting of Carmelo Anthony. But when the Bulls rolled out the red carpet yesterday for ‘Melo at the United Center, Rose was there, and he may have played a huge part in convincing the free agent forward to join the Bulls.
According to sources close to the situation, the Bulls started their meeting with Anthony by giving him a tour of the United Center and then moved over to their new practice facility.
Later, the Bulls’ brass made a pitch centered around the fact that a core of Anthony, Joakim Noah, Derrick Rose and Taj Gibson – with Tom Thibodeau coaching – would be able to contend right away in the depleted Eastern Conference.
While Rose had went on the record saying that he wasn’t going recruit Anthony to Chicago, he was very involved in the team’s courtship of the superstar free agent, according to sources close to the situation. While at the United Center, sources say that Rose went through a private workout to show Anthony that he’s healthy and ready to compete at a high level next season.
Given Rose’s initial hesitation to assist in Chicago’s pitch to ‘Melo, it’s a surprising turn of events to see him participate in the courtship, but to also voluntarily conduct a private workout.
Chicago will always be competitive in the Eastern Conference because of their style of play and how coach Thibodeau gets his players to buy into his maniacal strong-side defensive approach over an 82-game schedule. But to truly contend, they will need Rose back at full strength.
If Rose can regain his all-star form, it changes the entire complexion of the team, and could certainly swing ‘Melo’s decision over the next week or two.
‘Melo is expected to meet with Houston, Dallas and the Los Angeles Lakers this week before circling back to the Knicks.
Maybe the Bulls didn’t have all the answers ‘Melo wanted on Tuesday, but we at least know they tried their best to answer the biggest question of them all: the health of Derrick Rose.
What do you think?
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