Derrick Rose: LeBron-Like

Nick ConditCorrespondent IApril 6, 2008

I'll admit it, I was a hater. I didn't believe in Memphis because of their weak schedule until I saw them blow out their opponent with ease in their conference championship game. Until I realized how scary good Derrick Rose is.

I also think that this year's Final Four showcases some of the best college basketball teams in history. Any of the four could have won. But what makes the difference for the Memphis Tigers is their Freshman freak child Derrick Rose.

At 6-3, 205 pounds, point guard Derrick Rose is an outstanding rebounder and a pure athletic specimen. Think LeBron James, just not as large and overbearing. He's shorter and not as thick—LeBron is listed at 6-8, 240. He'll put up J-Kidd like numbers in the NBA.

Rose is LeBron as a point guard. And James is currently putting up 30 points, eight rebounds, and seven assists per game in the NBA. These numbers are Kidd in his prime like numbers; Chris Paul-like numbers. That's how good Derrick Rose will be.

This season he's only averaging 15 points, four rebounds, and five assists in 28 minutes per game, but he also has to share the back court with fellow future NBA first-round pick Chris Douglas-Roberts who drops 18 points a night, including 28 on Saturday against UCLA.

In the NCAA Tournament however, Rose is averaging 34 minutes played, 22 points, seven rebounds, and six assists. Pretty solid numbers for a college point guard and comparable to LeBron's NBA stats.

Kansas head coach Bill Self explained in media interviews how Rose can go the length of the court in four dribbles. Dick Vitale said that he is the best player in the country, and that out of this year's draft class he would pick Rose to build a franchise around.

Memphis head coach John Calipari called him "a unique program changer." And if the Michael Beasley's and the O.J. Mayo's weren't as flashy and overshadowing, Derrick Rose would be the standout consensus number one pick in the NBA draft.    

I believe he would be an excellent pick for my woeful Knicks, who need to get rid of Isiah Thomas and Stephon Marbury, and insert Derrick Rose as the point guard. Rose is lightning quick and possesses great power for his size, he's a good shooter, an excellent rebounder, and a good passer. His ability to get to the rim is LeBron-esque.

Oh and he can throw it down too. I guess it just comes with wearing the number 23.