Derrick Rose: 'I'm Waiting for That Day When I'm Normal'
Rose has offered just enough tantalizing tidbits to somewhat pacify an increasingly weary fanbase hoping to see his return, but realizing that the shrinking remaining schedule makes that comeback look more like a season away.
That's because he wasn't too injured to play. At least that's what a source told ESPNChicago.com's Melissa Isaacson, saying that his doctor had cleared him for action.
But Rose's issues don't revolve around the physical limitations left from the torn ACL he suffered in the first game of the opening round of the 2012 playoffs.
Rose said the one thing standing between him and the basketball court is his confidence, his ability to feel normal again.
As to whether there's a possibility that Rose finds that normalcy over the Bulls' remaining 19 games remains a mystery even to the player.
"I really don't know," Rose said before the team's practice on Thursday (via K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune). "I'm just like y'all where I'm waiting until that day where I feel normal. Until then, I'll just wait."
As for what exactly would define normal, he offered a direct response.
"When I'm out there (and) I'm not thinking, I'm just reacting, that's how I know I'll be ready," he said.
Rose knows that there's no way to know when that day will come. And he understands that it may not come this season, although he has no drop-dead date set for delaying his return for next season.
"I don't have a date, I haven't really thought about it," he said. "I'm just taking my time. I'm moving forward, getting stronger every day. I did every workout possible; my workouts are getting a lot easier. I'm moving in the right direction."
Bulls fans knew they'd have to sacrifice a promising postseason run last season when Rose went down. They also knew that he faced a long road back to the hardwood, but most envisioned him returning to action at some point this season.
There's a lot of understandable frustration breezing through the Windy City, regardless of the team's 35-28 record.
But while a season without Rose wasn't what they had in mind, they should understand that it's a far better outcome than some other alternatives.
"If I rush back and something was to happen, everybody would say 'Why did you rush back?'" he said. "So I'm just taking my time and being prepared and knowing when I come back I'm going to be 100 percent."
Bulls fans know better than anyone—a fully healthy Rose is certainly worth waiting for.
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