“I talked to Derrick just before tipoff. He said a decision is still up in the air. Equipment manager John (Lastname) says he’s been carrying Rose’s jersey throughout the playoffs, just in case he’s ready, wakes up one day and says ‘I’m playing.'” That was from a sideline reporter during Wednesday night’s Chicago-Miami NBA playoff game. Cut to a shot of Rose on the bench, in a gray suit with a light-pink shirt. Suits look big on him.
So the Bulls are ready if Derrick Rose wakes up one day and decides to play. That report was followed on TV last night by the revelation, from game announcer Marv Albert, that “Derrick has been watching the movie ‘A Good Day To Die Hard,’ starring Bruce Willis, every day since he’s been here in Miami. And he watched it twice on Sunday.”
Steve Kerr, his co-commentator, then said “I don’t know, is there a hidden meaning in there? I didn’t see the movie. That’s, like, ‘Die Hard 9’ or something like that.” And then, as soon as he was done saying that, LeBron James threw down a huge alley-oop off a near-half-the-court-length pass from Dwyane Wade.
No one saw that movie! Right? I worship “Die Hard,” (click here) and even I didn’t think about seeing “Live Free or Die Hard.” Why is Derrick Rose watching that movie so much? Why won’t he play?
“Undefeated,” which just won the Best Documentary Oscar, is about a few players on a Memphis high-school football team. One of those players, Money, blows out his knee. He keeps visiting the doctor and he keeps crying as the doctor regretfully informs him his knee isn’t strong enough to let him play. We’ve seen this in “Friday Night Lights” (the nonfiction book) and in “Hoop Dreams.” High school kids are totally desperate for their doctors to give them permission to play, so they can rejoin their teammates. When they can’t play they cry. The first day they’re allowed, they’re in.
Why do high school players go back as soon as they’re allowed but an NBA superstar doesn’t?
Derrick Rose blew out his knee last year and had surgery. Doctors cleared him to play two months ago, according to ESPN. He’s 24, was MVP, has an endearingly soft-spoken and humble personality. D-Rose is beloved – a fast, powerful point guard on the Chicago Bulls. And before this season started, Adidas (his shoe sponsor) ran an ad campaign that re-showed us the game he got injured and dramatized the entire city of Chicago suddenly stuck in slow motion because everyone there was so devastated. Then the commercial showed Rose working his ass off to rehab, and getting back on the court.
He’s cleared to play. He’s been scrimmaging against teammates. His dunks in pregame warmups are impressing. His team has already taken a game from LeBron James and the Miami Heat. The Heat is perhaps one of the best teams ever, looking to win LeBron’s second championship. LeBron just won the NBA MVP award for the fourth time in five years. Rose is the reason it wasn’t his fifth in a row.
Nate Robinson, who is 5-foot-7 and playing out of his crazy-ass mind, was talking so much trash in guys’ faces Wednesday night he got a technical foul. The Heat’s tattooed power forward Bird Man was, likewise, assessed a technical foul for acting like he wanted to beat Bulls players up. Fights keep almost breaking out. These are scrappy rivalry games, and they’re awesome.
LeBron dominated Wednesday night (such beautiful passing) in a blowout Heat win, but this series is just getting started. It’s best-of-7, and the teams are tied 1-1. Rose could do something amazing here. Why doesn’t he?
He’ll be back Friday. It’s set up like the commercial. Legend time