When Derrick Rose decided to sit out the 2012-2013 season, the basketball world took a collective sigh that signaled more annoyance than sympathy. Slightly out of disappointment but mostly because of the torturous way Rose decided to draw things out.
It was the first real knock to his humble, nice-guy persona since pictures surfaced of him flashing gang signs in 2009.
For the most part, any uproar stayed beneath the surface. But now a new one is bubbling that could bring LeBron James-like heat if the Chicago Bulls don’t begin to win. And by win, I mean win it all — although it will be hard to do while he’s fighting through his Allen Iverson syndrome.
“I don’t recruit,” Rose told rappler.com, in a video last week. “If anyone wants to play with me, I don’t mind playing with, it could be anyone in the NBA, but as far as recruiting, I never did and never will.
The Chicago native’s stubborn stance is nothing new. He famously refused to put in a call to James, Dwyane Wade or Chris Bosh during their free agency frenzy. He denied the fans a shot at seeing a dynamic duo and he continues to. Even though he went on record with ESPNChicago.com about helping the Bulls snag Kirk Hinrich.
“Kirk is the first person I recruited,” Rose said last October.
“When you’re a hooper and you know someone on the court is going into a battle with you, and he’s not giving up if he knows you are going to keep battling and I’m someone that will keep fighting to the end, and he’s the same as you, so why not have him on the team?”
In other words, Rose is only willing to recruit players who won’t take the spotlight off of him. He wants to be the man who carries the team to victory — that lone star that lifts the city, a la Iverson in Philly.
There’s truly no other way to explain it. Because he knows that a Wade, James or even Kobe Bryant would go out every night and lay their lives on the line for a chance to win a championship. Yet he won’t go a few extra miles to make things happen.
In a way it’s admirable. Rose is taking the franchise’s pressure and putting it on his shoulders. Unfortunately, the same selfish pride only got Iverson to one NBA Finals with one game won.
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