Rose opens up, calls ACL injury “the closest thing to death”

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Derrick Rose has kept a fairly low profile this summer, rehabbing and letting the playoffs — where he should have been a star deep into them — or the Olympics (where he would have played and won gold) take center stage. He’s just rehabbed and put out a couple videos.

But he sat down with friend-of-this-blog Aggrey Sam of CSNChicago.com and really opened up about the injury. And you can tell it’s still vivid in his memory.

“I remember everything. I remember jumping in the air and coming back down, and just that popping sound. I felt it actually tear when I laid all the way out and it just let go.

“I didn’t have that that much pain after that. In the beginning I did, but I didn’t want to yell or anything. When that happened, all I could think about was people just talking. You could hear the whole arena, people just whispering all around — one of the things, like ‘Not again. Come on, man. First game back. We had the win’ — and I was just hoping [it was] nothing serious. Then, we got to the hospital, got in the MRI machine, the whole time praying.

“Dr. [Brian] Cole, the Bulls doctor [who also performed the subsequent surgery], came up to me and told me it was torn. I couldn’t believe it. That’s the closest thing to death, the closest to death I’ve got to right there, where it just seemed like the wind and everything was taken out [of me].”

He said there have been silver linings — he has slowed down, is spending time with family.

“It’s been damn good, being around my family, knowing that they’re the ones that’s taking the load off me now, doing everything, asking if I need something, even just getting up with me to go to therapy. My friends, what they’ve been doing, just showing that they appreciate me and care, that’s what keeps me going,” Rose said.

He also says he knows he’s going to be back, he’s going to come back stronger. He is working hard to strengthen his lower body.