Bulls fans will want to check out the brand new documentary, POOH: The Derrick Rose Story which premieres on watchstadium.com/live this coming Thursday at 6 p.m.
Rose’s long-time agent and close friend B.J. Armstrong paid a visit to the NBC Sports Chicago studio this week to talk about the project. Rose gave the documentary film crew unlimited access, capturing all the highs and lows of his life on and off the basketball court.
According to Armstrong, offering a completely unfiltered look was the key to the whole project. Armstrong told me, “I give him all the credit because he had the courage to let the camera follow him everywhere. He didn’t turn it off in tough moments. He didn’t shy away from tough times, and he really did a nice job of saying ‘you know what, let’s keep that camera rolling.’ “People will get a chance to see that he wanted to tell a story from a point of view where he includes everything that happened; the good, the bad, tough times, emotional times. You’ll see some raw emotion and some things that probably you’ve haven’t seen from a Derrick Rose.”
Rose has enjoyed a remarkable comeback season, averaging 18 points per game as a sixth man with the Minnesota Timberwolves after hitting a career low point when he was temporarily out of the league after being waived by the Utah Jazz in Feb. of 2018.
Rose turned 30 in October, but appears to have found his game again after years of battling injuries. He’s played for the veteran’s minimum in each of the last two seasons, but now is poised to hit the free agent market after a very productive year. We know the Bulls will be looking to upgrade at the point guard position, so is a Rose return to Chicago a realistic possibility?
According to Armstrong, Rose continues to enjoy a good relationship with Bulls’ ownership and the front office and is still Chicago through and through. “Anything is possible”, Armstrong told me, “that would be an incredible ending, one that we never thought of; but you never know what could happen, and we’ll see in the end how this plays out.”
Would Rose be a good fit in Year 3 of the Bulls’ rebuild? Well, John Paxson is on record saying the Bulls want to add some quality veterans to their youthful roster, and Rose could provide some much-needed bench scoring while also helping to develop a young point guard the Bulls might add in the draft like Ja Morant, Darius Garland or Coby White.
When Rose was traded to New York following the 2015-16 season, no one could have imagined him playing for the Bulls again. But time has a way of healing all wounds, and now it appears both sides are willing to at least consider the possibility of putting that #1 Bulls jersey back into use.
Around the Association
With the Miami Heat facing an uphill battle to land the final Eastern Conference playoff spot, Dwyane Wade’s NBA career could be ending sooner than he had hoped. Budweiser released an emotional tribute video on Tuesday, featuring Wade’s mother, along with three other people whose lives Wade had touched with his philanthropic work.
Wade was born on Chicago’s South Side and raised in the south suburbs, but his flirtation with the Bulls in 2010 free agency and his one unsatisfying season in a Bulls’ uniform late in his career left a bad impression on a significant portion of the fan base. Still, no matter what your opinion is of Wade the basketball player, his tireless charitable work needs to be saluted. Wade’s playing career may be coming to an end, but you can count on him to continue to being an influential force in trying to help less fortunate members of our society.
Denver Nuggets coach Mike Malone responded angrily to reports he deliberately rested players in a recent game to avoid a potential playoff match-up against Houston in the second round of the playoffs. Malone said his team was coming off a difficult stretch of six games in nine days and had a number of players injured. He said the Nuggets aren’t afraid of any team in the West and would be ready to take on whichever team they’ll face in the postseason.
I’m sure Malone is telling the truth about some of his players needing rest, but the Nuggets wouldn’t be the first team to try to set up a more favorable playoff matchup. Denver has slumped late in the season, and they could be in for quite a battle against the Thunder, Clippers or Spurs in the first round. It’s been a feel-good season in the Rocky Mountains, but those good feelings could disappear pretty quickly with a first round knockout.
Finally, congratulations to the Virginia Cavaliers on the school’s first NCAA Tournament championship. Likely lottery pick De’Andre Hunter impressed all the NBA scouts in attendance with his impressive performances in both games at the Final Four, and his ability to defend four positions will serve him well at the pro level.
Still, even with what we saw from Hunter and Texas Tech’s Jarrett Culver in Minneapolis, we’re still looking at a two-player draft in June, with Duke’s Zion Williamson and Murray State’s Ja Morant looking like the only potential franchise changers. Duke’s R.J. Barrett figures to go third, and then it’s beauty in the eye of the beholder after that.