The note had actually been available for more than a week in ESPN The Magazine, but nobody had really noticed the controversial statement. Read into that what you want about ESPN the Magazine (even ESPN reporters did not know or follow up).
But finally somebody noticed and Sunday morning news started to spread quickly —NBA MVP Derrick Rose said the NBA had a “huge” issue with performance enhancing drugs. He said the problem was a 7 on a scale of 1-to-10.
But quickly Rose shot the story down, and by game time had released a statement saying basically he did not say that, reports Aggrey Sam of CSN Chicago.
“Regarding the quote attributed to me in ‘ESPN The Magazine,’ I do not recall making the statement nor do I recall the question being asked,” Rose said in a statement released by the Bulls. “If that was my response to any question, I clearly misunderstood what was asked of me. But, let me be clear, I do not believe there is a performance enhancing drug problem in the NBA.”
The NBA does do drug testing and a couple of current players — Rashard Lewis and O.J. Mayo — have missed games due to suspensions for use of PEDs in recent years. But the consensus around the league is there is not a culture of PED use and it is not a problem. That is a sentiment echoed by players, coaches, front office, the players union and even David Stern.