Derrick Rose was healthy enough to play by the end of last season, but he chose not to. Now, we know why.
Rose, who won the NBA MVP award in 2011, felt healthy enough to play but apparently not good enough to compete at the same level as he was accustomed. The Bulls’ star point guard says that he felt fine going against single defenders but that even when playoffs came around he didn’t feel comfortable with double teams.
“I never felt like I could take on a double-team,” Rose said via ESPN. “I knew that I could get past one person, but in the playoffs, you really have to think the game and people are going to throw different strategies and defenses at you almost every game.
“I knew I wasn’t ready to take on the double-team in the playoffs, so I had to make the decision that I’m not coming back.”
The Bulls went on to lose in the second round of the NBA playoffs last season, dropping the conference semifinals series to the eventual NBA champion Miami Heat in five games.
Rose says he feels “way more confident” in his surgically repaired knee as he enters this season, though, which could change the Bulls’ playoff fortunes.