Rose Says DNP In Team USA Exhibition Was Result Of “Body Fatigue”

08.21.14 4 years ago 2 Comments

Breathe easy, Chicago Bulls fans. Derrick Rose says he’s fine. After sitting out Team USA’s exhibition against the Dominican Republic on Wednesday night, Rose told reporters he was resting due to “body fatigue” as opposed to lingering pains in his surgically repaired knees.

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Rose started and played 24 minutes in the Americans’ win against Brazil on Saturday night at Chicago’s United Center, but hasn’t taken the court for USA Basketball since. In addition to missing last night’s friendly in New York City, Rose was withheld from practice on Monday and Tuesday.

Though Rose has repeatedly denied experiencing any knee soreness in the wake of his first meaningful competition since last November, multiple reports have said otherwise. It’s important to remember that Rose completed Team USA’s training camp in late July and early August without any absences or restrictions, blowing away coaches and teammates with the trademark athleticism that propelled him to superstardom four years ago.

But game speed is a different animal than practice speed. It not only made sense that Rose’s game looked rusty against the Brazilians, but also that his body – and knees – would react adversely to 24 minutes of maximum, full-tilt intensity. No matter how hard Rose worked out individually or practiced with Team USA, simulating the effect of basketball’s highest level was always going to prove impossible. The relative setbacks of body and knee aches gleaned from game action surely aren’t as deflating to Rose as they are to the public – they were always a likely possibility.

But it still calls into question his status as a “core” member of Team USA. Will coach Mike Krzyzewski feel comfortable in Spain counting on a starting point guard who requires ample rest after games?

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Developing events might glean a glimpse of the answer to that question. Though Rose is a full participant in today’s practice, Kyrie Irvingwho was brilliant against the Dominican Republic, by the way – is teamed with Krzyzewski’s other starters in lieu of the 2011 MVP.

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It goes without saying that USA Basketball will work with Rose to ensure his long-term health. He wouldn’t have committed to playing for his country if that weren’t the case. But that still begs the question whether or not Rose’s inevitable and ongoing acclimation to legitimate competition is best done on the international stage. After all, he’s a Chicago Bull first and foremost.

In a column published late last night, Rick Telander of the Chicago Sun-Times pleaded with the Windy City’s native son to leave Team USA given that fact.

OK, Derrick, just stop.

Quit Team USA and call it a day.

Or a week. Or whatever.

Rest your right knee. Rest your left knee. Rest everything. Have yourself cryogenically frozen and then thawed in two months, ready to play NBA basketball.

That’s when the regular season starts, and that’s all we really care about.

That’s what the Bulls are paying you $100 million to do, after all.

But it’s not that simple. Rose is due these types of adjustments no matter if he’s wearing red, white, and blue or red, black, and white. If Krzyzewski and USAB chairman Jerry Colangelo are prepared to take Rose abroad, he should relish the opportunity to fight through inevitable pains gleaned from the vigor of actual games.

Rose could re-injure himself any time, and entering the 2014-2015 season with as sound a body and mind as possible will be what’s best for the Bulls – no matter how dangerous playing for Team USA may seem on the surface.

Should Rose quit Team USA?

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