Derrick Rose

Despite the cheesy Backstreet Boys innuendo in the headline, this is what it must feel for some Chicago Bulls fans, not to mention the people running the team or his teammates, the players, when Rose keeps the fact and date of his actual return to the NBA a national top secret, with the 2012-2013 season almost over, and the playoffs just around the corner.

The last time Rose played an NBA game was April 28, in game 1 of the first round series of the playoffs last season. The Bulls went from contenders into a number one seed that got flushed out by the ugly-basketball-playing Philadelphia 76ers. All because of one player who should have been taken off the court a bit earlier, ended up tearing his ACL, making a long, painful recovery, but has been holding everyone to emotional ransom lately by simply toying with the idea of returning.

I’m just trying to get better. I’m just trying to help my teammates, give them confidence to go out there and play hard, and just be a great teammate. I’ll play whenever I’m ready to play. Who knows when I’m ready to? Right now, all I can do is just cheer on my teammates.

So for now, Rose sticks to towel waiving, somehow forgetting that he’s a MVP winner, and that the mystery around his return might actually be damaging to the team and the way Tom Thiobdeau prepares for the NBA playoffs. Rose returning now won’t really make much of a difference, but if he does get a few games under his wing before the postseason begins, maybe he can actually be more of a major factor when it actually means something.

Instead, the Bulls are stuck between predictions and projections. Rose is physically healthy, but maybe not confident enough to return, in his head. Maybe it’s the dominance of the Miami Heat that’s scaring him and the Bulls from pressing his return, feeling that this season is a lost cause for the East in any case, and there’s no use in pushing him to the floor when there’s no actual chance of contending.

I wouldn’t mind playing limited minutes at all. Of course I want to play more, but it’s not that big. I’m going to play whenever I’m ready. I don’t care if it’s 15 or 40 minutes. I just love the game too much. I’m just waiting, just praying about it and hopefully I’ll be out there soon.

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