It seemed at times during the playoffs (and regular season) the Chicago Bulls offense was a playground style “give the ball to Derrick Rose and let’s see what he can create.” It wasn’t, there were plays and everything, but Rose is the one guy on that team who can consistently create shots for himself and others, so he had to. Virtually every time down.
No player since Allen Iverson dragged the Sixers offense to the 2001 NBA finals seems to have been asked to do that much for an offense that deep in the playoffs. (Iverson had a usage rate of 35.9 percent that season, compared to 32.2 percent for Rose last season, and while Kobe Bryant had similar usage rates during the Lakers two recent titles he had a lot more talent around him than Rose or Iverson.)
Rose validated his MVP credentials during the playoffs, playing as well as anyone in the first two rounds. Quietly, however, he was dealing with troublesome wrist and back injuries, in addition to the left ankle sprain he suffered in the first round against the Indiana Pacers. Rose had become used to simply putting on an ankle brace and playing whenever he had previously sprained an ankle. This time, he required an hour worth of treatment before each game….
“I just learned from last season where my conditioning wasn’t up to par at the end of the season,” Rose said. “That’s what I’m working on this summer, getting my conditioning right. There was just fatigue. My body wore down. Just going through the rounds, the first time being there past the first round, it was hard. I’m just learning from it.”
Rose is back in the gym, saying the problem was not that he didn’t have any help around him but rather that he was not in good enough condition. You love to hear that if you’re a Bulls fan, but it doesn’t mean he is right. Carlos Boozer can score, but the Bulls need to get another shot creator on the team, ideally at the guard spot. Someone who could bring what Lou Williams brought to the Sixers off the bench last season.
After LeBron James had success guarding Rose in the Eastern Conference Finals other teams will try bigger players on Rose. Which will quickly show a lot of teams that they don’t have LeBron James — he has the combination of size and speed to stay close to Rose, no other player his size does. But that will be the plan, Rose will see a lot more physical play from teams that try to wear him down as a strategy.
Rose will be ready for it. You just know it. But the Bulls still have to get him more help.
What Derrick Rose did Friday night to the Atlanta Hawks is illegal in 14 states.
He showed why he was named MVP. He showed why the Hawks were always going to be in a lot of trouble in this series, because they had nobody who could stop Rose. (Well, that and the Hawks were going to struggle to score against the lock down Bulls defense.)
Rose put on a clinic Friday night and the Bulls took charge of the series. He he plays like this again Sunday and this series will be all but over.
Well, you knew it wouldn’t take long for Adidas to jump on marketing Derrick Rose as MVP.
And here it is, the first ad, featuring Rose’s quote from the beginning of the season wondering why he couldn’t have an MVP season, that he set that out as a goal for himself. It seemed to be cocky at the time, but it turned out to be prophetic.
Notice Adidas is not using footage of Rose’s twice-sprained ankle in the playoffs as part of this video.
We knew it was coming, seemingly forever, and as should be expected it was a runaway.
Derrick Rose is the NBA’s MVP. The youngest ever at age 22. The most recent in Chicago Bull to win it since that guy with the statue out in front of the United Center. Rose becomes only the second MVP to win playing for his hometown (Wilt Chamberlain in Philadelphia).
Rose gave a personal, emotional acceptance speech thanking his mother for all her sacrifices. He talked a lot about how they helped lay a foundation for who he became.
“I remember coming in to training camp saying that I wanted to be MVP,” Rose said. “I wasn’t trying to be cocky at all. I knew that I put a lot of hard work in in the summer, in the offseason and I just wanted to push myself, and that was about it.”
Rose was the Bulls offense. While there are other guys who can score — well, theoretically Carlos Boozer can score — Rose was not only expected to create the shots for himself and others. When he was on the floor, 32.2 percent of Bulls plays ended with a Rose shot, assist, turnover or him being fouled. That was a higher percentage than any other player in the NBA.
Rose was a runaway with 113 first place votes out of 120 and 1,182 points. Orlando’s Dwight Howard finished second with 643 points, followed by LeBron James, Kobe Bryant and Kevin Durant in the voting.
Rose was the engine of the offense of a Chicago Bulls team that won 62 games. Actually, that understates it. He was the engine, transmission, axles, wheels, bucket leather seats and cup holders of the Bulls offense. Joakim Noah was the tail lights.
Rose will be the youngest MVP ever at age 22. Rose averaged 25 points and 7.7 assists per game and by the end had the backing of just about everybody for MVP. Well, just about everyone with a vote. While there was some push for Dwight Howard it never gained serious traction with voters as Rose and his Bulls played better basketball than other teams over the last month of the season. He’s a good choice.
Tuesday makes sense for the announcement, usually the announcement is done on an off-day between games then the award is presented before a home playoff game. The Bulls play Game 2 against the Hawks at the United Center Wednesday.