The Derrick Rose injury ledger has another entry to it, as an errant elbow resulted in a left orbital fracture, which will require surgery.
The team released the update on Rose Tuesday evening, hours after the Bulls’ first training camp practice. A timeline for his return will be determined after Rose’s surgery Wednesday morning.
“Derrick took a elbow to the face,” Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg said. “He’s getting that checked out right now. But he looked great when he was out there. But he took a good hard elbow.”
One day after Rose made waves on Media Day with his comments about looking ahead to free agency after the 2016-17 season, Tuesday was supposed to be the first day for Rose to begin proving himself on the floor—and in Hoiberg’s system, where now he’ll fall behind for at least a couple weeks, if his timeline holds to recent examples.
Memphis Grizzlies guard Mike Conley suffered the injury in Game 3 of the Grizzlies first round playoff series against Portland, and returned in Game 2 of the second-round series against Golden State, but that was with the urgency of the playoffs at hand.
[MORE BULLS: Derrick Rose admits to looking ahead to 2017 free agency]
Orlando Magic guard Victor Oladipo underwent surgery on a facial orbital bone on Oct. 25 and returned to play Nov. 14 approximately three weeks later, missing nine games at the start of the 2014-15 season.
If that’s the baseline for Rose, there’s a possibility he comes back before the start of the regular season.
“He rolled over. I don’t know,” said Jimmy Butler, who saw the reaction but not the actual play. “I was probably waiting for the ball to come back to me. I don’t know. I saw him in the training room after practice, so I guess I’ll go have a few words with him after this.”
Nikola Mirotic said the team was told it was nothing serious, and although the tendency when putting the words “Derrick Rose” and “injury” together leads to mass panic and skepticism, this isn’t a torn ACL or right meniscus injury.
It appears to be a freak basketball play that could’ve happened to anyone, yet it happened to Rose. Taj Gibson lightly joked when he was asked whose elbow hit Rose in the face.
“I don't know. Might have been me,” Gibson said. “It's one of those plays where everybody's going so hard. Hopefully he'll be OK.”
Until the surgery, though, there’s more questions about Rose’s future—right where this franchise seemingly left off at the end of last season.