Rose faces last chance for career


Minnesota Timberwolves guard Derrick Rose shoots a layup in the Timberwolves’ 129-120 home loss March 18 over the Houston Rockets.

By Julian Nunnery

Former Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose may be in the midst of his final opportunity to show the world he still belongs in the NBA. The Minnesota Timberwolves announced Mar. 18, they signed Rose for the remainder of the 2017-18 season, according to ESPN.

At 29 years old and in his 10th season, Rose has had a rollercoaster career plagued with devastating injuries, highlighted by a torn ACL in his left knee during the 2011-12 playoffs and a torn meniscus in his right knee during the 2013-14 season.

Ever since tearing the ACL in his left knee, Rose has only been a shadow of the MVP status he held in 2011. He has yet to play a full healthy season and has bounced around the league playing for the New York Knicks, Cleveland Cavaliers and was recently signed by the Utah Jazz, only to be waived a few days after.

Now as a member of the Timberwolves, Rose looks to reignite his game alongside familiar faces in guard Jimmy Butler, forward Taj Gibson and former Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau.

Thibodeau said he thinks adding Rose will be a positive for the Timberwolves, and he doesn’t expect him to have any issues adapting to playing with his team.

“We just thought he could help the team,” Thibodeau said according to a Mar. 9 ESPN article. “That’s what our expectations are: to come in, be a good teammate and try to help us win. I think he’s seen a lot of different things, he’s familiar with what we’re doing and he’s played with some of the guys we have. So that’s a plus.”

Rose will not need to produce an amazing stat line to prove his worth in the NBA but instead prove that he can remain healthy and consistently contribute in whatever role he is asked to play.

NIU senior special education major Michael Taylor said putting his injuries behind him and playing freely will allow Rose his best chance to continue his career in the NBA.

“Just go out there and play like you never got injured,” Taylor said. “Don’t be tentative taking it to the basket. I want to see the same fire in him that I see Russell Westbrook play with. You have to play like it never happened because if not, it’s in your mind and every move you make you’re going to think about it.”

To this point, staying healthy has not worked well for Rose, as he was sidelined in Minnesota’s last two games Friday and Saturday against the New York Knicks and the Philadelphia 76ers.

With the abundance of guards that help make up the Timberwolve’s roster including point guards Jeff Teague and Tyus Jones, it may take some time for Rose to find a consistent spot in the rotation.

Rose said he doesn’t think fitting in with the team will be an issue, and he is confident Thibodeau will allow him a chance to prove himself.

“I think I can play with anybody, to tell you the truth,” Rose said according to a Mar. 9 ESPN article. “I’m not here for stats or anything like that. I just want to win and help this team and franchise win. Talking to [Thibodeau], he sounds like he’s going to give me the opportunity, so it’s all about learning the guys and fitting in at the right time.”

Rose has a great opportunity to finally get himself back on track as a veteran NBA guard. Although it is highly important for Rose to prove himself as a contributor with the Timberwolves, he must also find a way to maintain his health to prolong his NBA career.