Per multiple reports over the past few months, Derrick Rose is on schedule to participate in the training camps for Team USA basketball in late July. Rose was one of the 28 names announced for the preliminary roster in January, and both the Chicago Bulls organization and Rose would benefit immensely if he is able to attend and perform at this summer’s training camps.
If Rose is ready once the USA basketball camp begins, participating in training would be the best-case scenario. Being able to play with the best players in the world — and more importantly, not having to carry the scoring/offensive load whatsoever — would allow him to focus on getting his game and body back into NBA form.
Rose is coming off his second knee surgery in less than two years, which has caused him to miss all but 10 regular season games over the past two seasons.
One of the problems that hampered Rose’s initial return and may have ultimately led to his second knee injury was the fact that he didn’t have the opportunity to ease into his game with the Bulls this season. Rose was expected to be his old self from the moment the season tipped off. That expectation from both the fans and the team was absolutely ridiculous. Here’s a guy who had spent over a year trying to get back on an NBA court, and we are expecting him to perform at a MVP level from day on? Come on now.
Those expectations, coming from all directions including the Bulls organization, may have pushed Rose to try to perform like the player he was in the past, leading to his season-ending injury. This time around, the smart thing would be to make sure he attends the camps this summer where he will be surrounded by the best coaches, players and training staffs in the country. Who cares if he makes the final roster? Just the idea of him playing again, surrounded by the some of the world’s best players, is enough of a reason to make sure Rose attends.
Ultimately, Rose is not going to be the same player he once was after having surgical repair on both knees. He will need to tweak his game slightly to continue to perform at his own high standards of play. What better place for Rose to work on his game and figure out what his body is capable of than at the Team USA’s training camps? Regardless of if he makes the FIBA World roster for Team USA, the training sessions can only help Rose and the Bulls moving forward. Having played competitive games before the NBA season starts is invaluable for the Bulls and the team’s coaching staff — and more importantly, for Rose’s confidence on the court.