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Grading Derrick Rose in his return vs. Magic

Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

For the most part, I was pleased with what I saw from Derrick Rose in his first game back in six weeks.

Yes, he played slightly hesitant. Like on this example below, where I thought Derrick could've perhaps put pressure on the defense and drag Jimmy's defender towards him for a drive-and-kick, but instead he settles for a three:

And then on this example where I thought Derrick had the opportunity to use a floater. But instead, Rose runs the play and passes to Mike Dunleavy who is hidden behind a couple of trees, but winds up in the spot where that giant circle is. Also, I probably should mention, the Bulls get an easy two points out of this possession anyway:

All in all, I had no major issues with the way Rose played. Yes, the threes were annoying, and his only shot within 18 feet all game was this transition opportunity.


Because while I wouldn't defend Derrick's shot selection last night, I see him make clever plays only he is capable of due to his superior size and strength, and I know Aaron Brooks just isn't capable of something like the clip below. The Bulls were desperately missing this:

I mean, Brooks definitely can't make an over-the-head-change-of-pace-falling-out-of-bounds pass like that. Hell, he can't even make some passes he absolutely needs to make because he's swallowed up by defenses too easily:

So yeah, overall happy with what I saw from Rose. His passing was especially crisp early on, which kind of caught me by surprise cause I assumed his passing -- something inherently dependent on timing -- wouldn't be so sharp just yet. There was also one play in the first quarter where Derrick nailed an open corner three because he sprinted and beat everybody down the floor.

I'd give Derrick a solid B in his return. And in encouraging news, he said he felt good post-game and that the plan is to have him play again tonight in Miami.