In the 2012 playoffs, he went down with a torn ACL in his left knee. After missing the 2012-2013 season, he returned to play the opening month of the 2013-2014 season, before tearing his meniscus in his right knee. The long road back resulted in him playing on and off through the beginning of the 2014-2015 season. He finally seemed to be hitting his stride and the injuries concerns were starting to fade. Then last night Derrick Rose had tragedy strike again, this time in the form of a torn right meniscus again.
Now four years removed from his stellar MVP campaign in 2011, Rose has suffered three devastating injuries. Each time he has rehabbed to come back and make his return, only to find that his body once again betrayed him. Rose has shown no indication that this is going to end his career, just simply derail it temporarily. As good as Rose has been for the Bulls, for his own sake, he should walk away before he suffers any more injuries.
The Chicago-native has been incapable of staying healthy. Even before his first major knee surgery, Rose only managed 40 games between the regular and postseason in 2012-2013. The following year, Rose returned for 10 appearances before blowing out his knee a second time. Before this premature ending to his season, Rose only played in 46 of the team’s 57 games. Including the playoffs, the Bulls’ point guard has missed 219 games in the past four years. That is an average of 55 games per year. If you can only count on a player being available for a third of the season, he is no long worth it for the team and it is really time for the player to walk away.
Additionally, Rose has also seen his production drastically drop. In the two seasons before his injuries started, Rose averaged about 23 points, 7 plus assists and 4 rebounds per night. In the two hobbled seasons since he tore his ACL, Rose’s production dropped to 17.1 points, 4.7 assists and 3.2 rebounds per contest. Those are still efficient numbers, but it is clear how much of a toll the injuries are taking on Rose’s ability to compete at an elite level. His number of minutes also took a dip, dropping from 37 to 31 minutes per game. He also has seen his ability to shoot effectively leave him. Rose has only hit 38.1 percent of his attempts since the beginning of 2013. For his sake, Rose needs to think about moving on.
We are seeing a player decline right before our eyes. He is taking the route of Brandon Roy and Greg Oden before him. They all have unbelievable amounts of talent but they are unable to stay on the court consistently enough to make a real impact. For the Bulls from a financial standpoint, they are losing big time. Despite only playing 41 percent of his regular season games in the past three years, Chicago has paid Rose roughly $53 million in that time span according to Spotrac. It is tough to shame the Bulls for signing D-Rose to the contract that they did but now it is clearly proven to be a bad deal for them.
The reality is thought, that if Rose does not retire, Chicago has no choice but to leave him on the roster. If the team released Rose after this year, it would count as $21 million in dead cap money. Let me make something clear, I do not want to see Derrick Rose retire as a sports fan. I want to see that budding superstar we all witnessed in 2011 return to terrorizing the league, but let’s face it, we are never going to see that again. Rose is too hindered by the state of his knees to play at an MVP caliber again. I already feel so bad for the 26-year old with everything he has had to battle through to even reach this point, but I cannot bear to watch him go through it all again. I wish there was another way to solve the problem but Rose needs to call it quits. He is never going to regain that form he once had. He has sacrificed his body enough for his team. Giving it a rest now might not be what I want as a basketball fan, but as outside observer putting my love sports aside, I want Rose to get a break. He needs it more than anyone else.