Derrick Rose has not played in an NBA game in roughly 17 months, but once he does get back on the court, he feels he could be better than ever.
Rose, the 2012 NBA Most Valuable Player, had some interesting things to say in an interview with SLAM magazine. In addition to saying he feels “a lot quicker [and] a lot more explosive,” Rose thinks that all those extra shots he took while rehabbing his knee might actually pay off in another aspect of his game.
“I’ve been shooting, a lot,” Rose told SLAM. “Especially during [last] season, I’d go out there before games and shoot up a lot of shots. Now you add lifting weights and you’re shooting almost every day, your shot becomes easier, and your confidence grows. And with shooting, there’s nothing like confidence. So I think I’m going to be a great shooter next year.”
If there was any weakness in Rose’s game before the injury — and that’s a big “if” — it was his shooting. He shot just 37 percent on long 2-pointers in his last healthy season, according to HoopData, and his career 3-point percentage of 31 percent is too low to force defenses to respect him from the outside.
Before his knee injury, Rose was explosive enough that he could still get by defenders even if they gave him plenty of space to shoot a jump shot. He’ll need to change that now, because no matter how he feels, it is highly unlikely he is “quicker” than ever before.