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Is it worth it for Derrick Rose to return this season?

BY DI STAFF | MARCH 26, 2013 5:00 AM

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Yes

That is, of course, if he thinks he can bring it.

Many feel it is not worth Derrick Rose coming back this season because of the chance he could reinjure his surgically repaired left knee after tearing his ACL in last year’s first round of the playoffs. While there is always a possibility athletes can injure themselves, doctors have cleared Rose, saying he is no more likely to reinjure his left knee than he was before the incident.

This week marks the fifth in a row that Rose has participated in full contact 5-on-5 practices, proving his body is ready for game situations. All that remains is for Derrick to psychologically persuade himself he is ready.

The Bulls have played well this season without Rose and find themselves in sixth place in the Eastern Conference, separated by only 2½ games from fourth place.

If Rose comes back for Wednesday night’s game against the Heat, it gives Rose 13 games to get his feet wet before the playoffs. Coming back Wednesday also provides the Bulls the chance to make up the 2½ games they need for a first-round home-court advantage.

Another reason many people believe Rose should not come back is because they think the Heat will inevitably win it all. Well, all I (or Denny Green, rather) have to say is fine; “if you want to crown them, then crown their ass.” Not so fast. 

Last season, the Heat were pushed to a seven-game series in the Eastern Conference Final by Boston. The Celtics had two opportunities to knock the Heat out while up 3-2 in the series before losing two straight. While the Heat eventually prevailed in the series, one cannot help but think what would have happened if Rose hadn’t been hurt and the Bulls went seven games with the Heat. The Bulls were better than the Celtics (3-1 head to head regular season), maybe even good enough to knock the Heat out a year ago.

Even if Rose comes back this season, and the Bulls don’t go deep into the playoffs, they go into next season knowing they can count on a healthy Rose because he proved himself able to play this year. 

So, while Bulls-Nation members have their fingers crossed for their MVP to return this year, all they can do is sit and hope. 

Oh, and did I mention Wednesday night’s game against the Heat is Derrick Rose bobble-head night? #thereturn

— by Mike Maienza

No

The Bulls are currently 38-31, and each game has been played without their star point guard, Derrick Rose. It’s clear the absence has had a negative effect on Chicago, which went 50-16 just a year ago.

Even if Rose returns, the Bulls are unlikely to gain much momentum going into the playoffs. But let’s say they do. The Bulls will eventually have to get through the Miami Heat, who are coasting on a 27-game winning streak — the second best-streak in NBA history.

It’s clear Miami is on pace to win the Eastern Conference and likely repeat as NBA champions.

The Bulls should look to focus on the future and will benefit by allowing Rose extra time to heal and build up his strength.

It’s no argument that the Bulls are a more complete team with Rose on the floor, but there is no need to put him in with a team that has played all year without him.

Chicago played an almost full schedule without Rose last season. It still clinched the Eastern Conference. Rose decided to come back and play in the first-round of the playoffs, only to get hurt by doing so.

Moreover, Rose wouldn’t be in sync with his team. That would create more harm than good.

By keeping Rose on the sideline, the Bulls can give other players time in the playoffs to build experience for when Rose comes back — such as Marcus Teague, whom the Bulls drafted in the first round last year.

The bottom line is that if Rose doesn’t feel 100 percent, then he shouldn’t return. The likelihood of Rose getting reinjured is higher with shaky confidence. Regardless of his return, there’s almost no chance of Chicago winning the title this year.

— by Jalyn Souchek


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