For months now, there have been whispers of tension between Derrick Rose and Jimmy Butler. Butler had a breakout season last year, making his first All-Star team and winning Most Improved Player, while Rose had an inconsistent, injury-filled season, leading to rumors that there was friction between them about whose team the Bulls were.
Not so, according to Rose, in a new interview with CSN Chicago:
“It’s false,” Rose said. “It’s so false. It’s so false. I love Jimmy as a player and as a person for one. Just knowing what he came from, what he had to go through just to get in this position. He still has a bright future. I’m lucky in my career to be playing with a player where the sky’s the limit. Like who knows how good he can be and who knows how good the team can be. It’s very exciting not only be playing with this team but with a guy like that.”
That’s a pretty strong statement without a lot of equivocating. Rose is right that Bulls need both him and Butler to play at a high level in order to contend. Rose made his preseason debut Friday night against the Mavericks, and he looked like a natural fit in Fred Hoiberg’s offense playing alongside Butler. As long as they’re winning, things should be fine.