We may have to wait a while for the return of Derrick Rose.
According to the Chicago Bulls star himself, there is still a chance we won't see him on the basketball court this season (via ESPN's Nick Friedell):
Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose reiterated Wednesday night there is a chance he will sit out the entire season as he recovers from surgery to fix a torn ACL in his left knee. He isn't sure when he'll return to the floor.
"I really don't know," Rose said. "I'm feeling good but like I said, if it's where it's taking me a long time and I'm still not feeling right, I don't mind missing this year."
This isn't exactly surprising. Bulls fans have been especially excited about the return of the former MVP in the past few weeks as he has began participating in drills and "full contact" practices.
But Rose isn't stupid.
The explosive point guard has stated that he won't return until he is "110 percent," and he is clearly aware that returning any less than full strength would put him in danger of a long-term injury.
The Bulls would obviously love to see him come back and help the team jockey for position in the Eastern Conference standings, but being Chicago's franchise player for many years to come is far more important than anything else.
Besides, it's not like Rose's team is drowning without him. After a narrow road loss to the Boston Celtics on Wednesday night, the Bulls now sit in fifth place in the East at 30-22.
Nate Robinson is playing well in place of Rose and the injured Kirk Hinrich, averaging 15.6 points, 8.0 assists and 1.7 steals per game since joining the starting lineup. The team's depth down low and elite defense also make life without Rose much easier.
The thought of Rose sitting out the rest of the season is a hard pill to swallow, but Bulls fans should view his outlook as a positive. When he comes back, he will be ready.
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