The team's official Twitter account broke the unfortunate news:
Earlier this morning, Derrick Rose underwent successful surgery to repair his previously torn medial meniscus in his right knee... (cont.)— Chicago Bulls (@chicagobulls) November 25, 2013
(cont.) ... The surgery was performed at Rush University Medical Center and Rose is out for the remainder of the season.— Chicago Bulls (@chicagobulls) November 25, 2013
Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau shed some light on Rose's attitude heading into the rehab process, per ESPN.com:
I talked to him at length last night. He's in good spirits. About as well as can be expected under the circumstances. And he's already thinking about his rehab, and typical Derrick—concerned about his team, his teammates. But that being said, we can't feel sorry for ourselves. We're the Chicago Bulls. We have one goal, that's to win. And I believe we have the personnel in that locker room to get it done.
Owner Jerry Reinsdorf issued a statement as well after Rose's surgery:
Like Bulls fans everywhere, I was heartbroken when I heard of Derrick’s injury. We are happy to know that, according to his doctors, his surgery was successful, and in time, Derrick is expected to make a full recovery. Everyone at the Bulls knows firsthand how extremely hard Derrick worked to return to the court this year, and I have no doubt he will do the same with regards to his recovery from this injury. Despite Derrick’s absence, this is still a good team. I know from last year, this team and coaching staff will continue to make our fans proud.
Rose, who just recently made his long-awaited return from a torn left ACL, injured his right knee in Friday's loss to the Portland Trail Blazers.
Alex Kennedy of Hoopsworld in Atlanta posted a photo of Rose after his surgery:
Derrick Rose appears to be in good spirits after surgery. He took this picture with his nurse: pic.twitter.com/VBnywqWBpd— Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) November 25, 2013
Following the procedure, the Thunder's Russell Westbrook reached out to Rose (via Darnell Mayberry of The Oklahoman):
Russell Westbrook called Derrick Rose shortly after his injury. "He's good," he said. "He's in good spirits. So he should be all right."— Darnell Mayberry (@DarnellMayberry) November 25, 2013
Now, the question becomes: Will Rose ever be the same player?
Having suffered back-to-back season-ending injuries to both of his knees, it's difficult to imagine him playing with the same aggressiveness when he returns to the court next season.
Prior to injuring his right knee last week, Rose had been struggling to find his way in his first 10 games back. Over a year-and-a-half removed from his left knee injury, the 25-year-old floor general was averaging a career-low 15.9 points and 4.3 assists per game on 35 percent shooting from the field.
While this news is obviously a huge blow to Chicago's title hopes, there is one positive takeaway from the team's announcement, per Bleacher Report's Ethan Skolnick:
The best thing the Bulls could have done was rule Derrick Rose out for the season. Kills speculation.— Ethan J. Skolnick (@EthanJSkolnick) November 25, 2013
Skolnick also reminds us that while they are currently the No. 6 seed in the Eastern Conference a 6-6, the Bulls still have one of the stronger lineups in a top-heavy East:
Bulls' roster is still good enough for home court in the East, unless they gut it and start over.— Ethan J. Skolnick (@EthanJSkolnick) November 25, 2013
Even without the former league MVP, Chicago should feel good about its chances to make a run in the postseason. As of now, the team ranks second in the league in rebounding (46.8 per game) and fourth in fewest points allowed (93.1 per game).
With veteran forwards Luol Deng and Carlos Boozer leading the way on the court, and Thibodeau calling the shots from the sidelines, the Bulls have a real shot to make some noise in the playoffs—even without their fallen superstar.
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