Derrick Rose Injured in Chicago Bulls Win: Why Was He Still on the Floor?

Bob WarjaSenior Writer IApril 28, 2012

CHICAGO, IL - APRIL 21:  Derrick Rose #1 of the Chicago Bulls returned to action against the Dallas Mavericks at the United Center on April 21, 2012 in Chicago, Illinois. The Bulls defeated the Mavericks 93-83. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agress that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

The Bulls have experienced the one thing they absolutely feared more than more than any opponent—even the Heat—an injury to their star and last year's MVP, Derrick Rose. But while injuries are a normal part of the game, one has to ask coach Tom Thibodeau why in the world was Rose still playing?

At the point of Rose's injury, there was about a minute left in a game the Bulls had wrapped up. There is simply no excuse for him to still be on the floor at that point. Yet there he was, jumping up in the air, apparently twisting his knee and in obvious pain.

Now, maybe the injury turns out to be nothing serious and the Bulls have dodged a bullet. But no matter, Thibodeau still needs to answer to his bosses, the media and Bulls fans everywhere as to why he didn't have his star player sitting on the bench.

After all, Rose had experienced a lot of injury this season already, so he was coming in as a huge question mark to begin with. Right foot and ankle injuries were the most recent, and he previously suffered groin, back and toe injuries.

Look, this is your star player and like it or not, he must be treated with caution. Yet Thibodeau has repeatedly shown an unwillingness to back off on his minutes except when absolutely forced to.

Hey, I know Thibodeau is one of those old-school coaches, but there is no reason for Rose to be on the court at that point in the first game of the series against the 76ers. Some of the blame has to go on Rose himself, who should have been taking it easy and not leaping in the air like Superman, but when you have the adrenaline of the moment kicking in, those things happen.

But what really ticks me off as a Bulls fan is Thibodeau's obvious disregard for the safety of his best player. For the Bulls to have any chance of winning a championship this year, they need a healthy and productive Rose. Now that is up in the air.