Rose hasn’t logged a single minute since tearing his ACL during the playoffs last April.
Although he has been medically cleared to play and has been participating in five-on-five scrimmages for a while now, Rose recently made it clear to ESPN that only God knows when he’ll return.
Chemistry could be one of the main concerns for the Bulls once Rose finally takes the hardwood.
The team has performed well this season without the former MVP point guard, currently holding the fifth-best record in the Eastern Conference. However, the addition of Rose to the lineup could end up disrupting the Bulls’ chemistry.
While Rose has played several games with the likes of Luol Deng, Joakim Noah and Carlos Boozer, it has been almost a year since they shared the court in a real NBA game. That said, it will take time for Rose to get on the same page as his teammates.
Plus, he has never played with guys like Nate Robinson and Marco Belinelli, who are both in their first season in Chicago. And he hasn’t played with fellow point guard Kirk Hinrich since the 2009-10 campaign.
It would be wise for Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau to limit Rose’s playing time if he does return. Rose, who has averaged nearly 37 minutes per game for his career, needs to be brought along slowly as he tests his knee and gets used to his teammates.
A healthy Rose is capable of contributing 25 points a night. The offensively challenged Bulls could obviously use a big-time scorer in the lineup; however, Rose should take the back seat so to speak and let Deng and Boozer continue to serve as the two leading scorers. Then, of course, Rose’s playing time can increase as he gets comfortable with the team.
Hinrich believes there shouldn’t be any chemistry issues once Rose returns (via ESPN Chicago).
I think those guys, especially the unit he'll be playing with, they played with him last year. I don't think it will be too big of an adjustment. He's that type of player who's going to make plays for himself and everybody else and just make it easier I think. There's not going to be much integrating.
Let’s hope Hinrich is right.
Another major concern is the possibility of Rose re-injuring his surgically repaired knee. Because of that possibility, some fans believe it isn’t worth it for Rose to come back this season.
Honestly, those fans have a point.
With or without Rose, it would basically take a miracle for the Bulls to win a title this year. It would also take a miracle for them to get past the reigning champion Miami Heat in the playoffs.
Sure, the Bulls recently beat Miami without the likes of Noah, Richard Hamilton and Belinelli in the lineup. But let’s face it: They can’t beat LeBron James and the gang four times in the postseason.
So perhaps the Bulls should prevent Rose from returning this season. Let him rest his knee and comes back 100 percent next season. Why risk Rose getting injured again if there’s no hope for a championship?
Chicago Blackhawks star Patrick Kane thinks the Bulls should shut Rose down (via ESPN Chicago).
I think with that you got to be careful. If he comes back and even tweaks it or hurts it again, he's out even longer. And then sometimes, it's even more mental with an athlete. Personally, I've never been with something like that—knock on wood—but the way he plays and his career, he's too valuable to pass up even for future years. I think the organization and probably the fans would be more happy in the long run if they shut him down.
There’s no guarantee that Rose will ever be the same megastar he was before the injury. An ACL tear is certainly a serious injury.
Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson has given Bulls fans hope, though. Just 10 months after tearing his ACL, the perennial Pro Bowler returned to the field last season, rushing for more than 2,000 yards and picking up the MVP award.
Hopefully, Rose pulls an Adrian Peterson and makes a remarkable comeback. And hopefully, he stays far away from the injured list, goes on to become a Hall of Famer and carries the Bulls to multiple NBA titles.