I don't want to write about this. Really, I don't. Jon Greenberg already did a good job of laying it out. So did K.C. Johnson. So did Kelly Dwyer. As much as I'd like to turn the focus to an extremely impressive win over a damn good Toronto Raptors team last night, the way that game ended only made this more inevitable.
This week in Bulls coverage was all about Derrick Rose. Specifically, it was about people having awful opinions about whether or not Derrick Rose is a coward for missing four games with two ankle sprains.
Four games. Two ankle sprains. Yeah, this is what counts as national news for our boy.
Let's rewind for the sake of posterity: on Oct. 31, in the second game of the season, Rose sprained both ankles against the Cleveland Cavaliers. He did not play in the fourth quarter or overtime as the Bulls lost their first game of the season. Rose would sit out the next two games, wins over Minnesota and Orlando.
This is when idiots started crashing through the wall like the Kool-Aid Man. People apparently did not believe Rose was actually injured, or at least that he was not injured enough to miss games. That public pressure, I really believe, played in a part in Rose returning the next game against Milwaukee. He scored 14 points and the Bulls won, but Rose admitted he only felt 50 percent. And so Rose did what he should have done all along -- ignored the noise and healed.
Rose missed two more games before returning against the Pistons on Monday. It was his best performance since his MVP days.
D. Rose basically kidnaped Brandon Jennings and D.J. Augustin, tied them to the train tracks and did the Birdman hand rub. It was that diabolical.
Rose finished the night with 24 points. The last time he scored 24 points? LeBron had no rings, Dwight Howard was on the Magic and the Phil Jackson was getting high on a ranch in Montana instead of worrying about teaching J.R. Smith the Triange. It's been that long. Maybe that's why the next day gave us the most insufferable bit of D. Rose chatter since he refused to come back from a torn ACL in 2012.
You know what D. Rose said by now. It doesn't need to be rehashed. The problem with all of this, I think, is that people on both sides want to make it black and white when it really isn't.
On one side, we have the Meatball Army, members of which include Charles Barkley, Skip Bayless and Steve Rosenbloom.
DRose, who made 34 mil for playing 10 games last 2 yrs, now more interested in protecting legs for after-basketball life. Just sickening.— Skip Bayless (@RealSkipBayless) November 12, 2014
Not as sickening as Skip Bayless's gross fucking face, but still. There is something deeply unfortunate about this side of the debate, though, and it's that a lot of people completely agree with it. They live among us: they're our teachers and doctors and uncles and grandmas. There are some people I really like on this side of the debate. In a way, I can see their point.
And while I want Derrick Rose to enjoy a pain-free retirement, he makes $19 million a year to play basketball. Not to be a basketball player— RUSS BENGT$ON (@russbengtson) November 11, 2014
On the other side, we have some people who see nothing wrong with what Rose said. These people are almost as bad:
Derrick Rose isn't the only player thinking of his future. No player wants to be in pain every day at 40. Rose is just only one to say it.— Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) November 12, 2014
For as much outrage is on both sides of this debate, I really don't think it's that hard to understand. Let me break it down real quick:
a) D. Rose is terrible at communicating
He shouldn't have said what he said. I mean, how do you think people are going to respond when you're talking about a graduation 16 years away and business meetings that only exist because you're a basketball player? With $300 million in his pocket, the dude can probably afford to buy some Ibuprofen to get him through those grueling parent-teacher conferences.
b) Ultimately, it doesn't matter
Because the comments struck such a cord, I think people lose sight of the facts. Those facts:
1) Rose had two sprained ankles. He missed four games. This is not abnormal for any player in the NBA.
2) He came back against the Bucks and didn't look that good. He sat two more games, came back again against the Pistons and killed everyone.
3) These games he's missing aren't playoff games. They're in early November against the worst teams in the league. Y'all really want him playing on two bum ankles against these worthless teams?
It's all garbage, to be honest. Straight trash. If no one reads this feature because you can't possibly stand more D. Rose talk, I don't blame you.
Of course, Rose had to get hurt last night to put a storm cloud over an otherwise awesome win. It looked bad but he's saying it's not a big deal. Thankfully, Joakim Noah put everything in perspective yesterday:
Noah said it's "fucking so lame" that everybody acts like it's the end of the world when something happens to Rose.— James Herbert (@outsidethenba) November 14, 2014
Did anyone really act like it was the end of the world?
People aren't that crazy, are they?
Certainly, I think everyone was able to keep their perspective about this.
It's not like it was a knee injury.
Will Derrick Rose ever stay healthy? Who cares, life is meaningless.— Ricky O'Donnell (@SBN_Ricky) November 14, 2014
Sports are the worst.
Let's move on.
Hello, this is Pau. I am taking in some fine ice hockey action this evening. It is a little chilly in here but I am still having fun! I am going to post a score update to Instagram even if it will be immediately out of date by the time most people see this. I am just trying to be a helpful, caring person.
I've been accused of being prone to hyperbole, BUT: is Pau literally the best person in the entire world? I'm thinking yes.
There's all this toxic bullshit around the team, but Pau is still out here being a light on this cold, dark Earth. I wouldn't trade him for LeBron right now.
WHAT DO Y'ALL EVEN KNOW ABOUT COMETS?
Pau Gasol (@paugasol) November 12, 2014
Maybe I should save this for The Booze News, but I can't help myself: Pau has 24 blocks in nine games right now. Boozer had 24 blocks all of last season! At this pace, Pau is seriously going to have twice as many blocks in one year as Boozer had in four years in Chicago.
Also: his offense has just been nasty. Last night was a goddamn clinic. I'm high on the Raptors but the Raptors had no idea what they were in for. Pau took 'em to the church with 27 points and 11 rebounds on 19 shots. It really felt like he could have gone off for 40.
On the season, Pau is posting a ridiculous 22.75 PER. To put that in perspective, D. Rose won MVP with a PER of 24.06. Pau is pretty close to that! We are so fortunate he loves the opera.
Both of these men have been blue balled by Nicki Minaj
Hanging with Drake pic.twitter.com/lztrSsPh7D— chuck swirsky (@swirsk054) November 14, 2014
The Jimmy max contract push is getting really, really real. He's leading the Bulls in scoring right now at 19.7 points per game. That makes him seventh in scoring among all shooting guards. He's shooting 52.3 percent from the field (second among all two guards) and is making over 38 percent of his threes. He rebounds and assists are both way up from last year, too. He's also third in the league in minutes per game behind only LeBron and Kyrie.
Are the Bulls idiots for not giving Jimmy his $12 million per year? Of course. Does it matter? It shouldn't. Just pay the man whatever in free agency and move on. He's great and the Bulls desperately need him both this year and longterm.
Periodic '90s Bulls check-in
GREAT TEANMATES BUT BETTER FRIENDS!! pic.twitter.com/040nndEaMy— Ron Harper (@HARPER04_5) November 13, 2014
Top 10 tweet of all-time.
Is Derrick Rose cut out for Chicago?
Is Derrick Rose not cut out for a town like Chicago? http://t.co/h3cx2hc1mq— Chicago Reader (@Chicago_Reader) November 13, 2014
"Real warriors don't worry about the day after tomorrow, and neither do their biggest fans"
That's a real line from that story. D. Rose is more Chicago than any of us, you dipshits. For fuck's sake.
The Booze News
Carlos Boozer's go-to move on pick-and-roll defense now is to just try desperately to kick the ball and stop play.— Zach Lowe (@ZachLowe_NBA) November 12, 2014
Carlos Boozer plays defense like he's a character on 'Breaking Madden.'— Kelly Dwyer (@KDonhoops) November 5, 2014
This has been The Booze News. Enjoy the weekend.