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Stan Van Gundy says Derrick Rose could be next star to bolt

Aug 21, 2012, 11:11 AM EDT

Chicago Bulls' Rose tosses the ball in front of Los Angeles Clippers' Paul after the Bulls turned the ball over during their NBA basketball game in Los Angeles Reuters

So who is next?

LeBron James left Cleveland to team up with stars in Miami, following a blueprint seen in Boston (although how they got there was different). It’s a trend that continued on through Dwight Howard pushing his way out of Orlando and landing in Los Angeles with Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash and Pau Gasol.

You know this is not the end — stars teaming up is not some new trend (have you seen the rosters of the 1960s Celtics?). The difference is free agency, or the threat of it, gives the players leverage in the team building. So who is next to try and move to a superteam?

Stan Van Gundy — who was in the middle of the poorly handled (by everyone) Howard debacle — was speaking Monday on 740 The Game sports radio in Orlando Monday and said he thinks Derrick Rose could be next. As transcribed by

“I think Derrick Rose is a great, great representative of our league, and he’s a great player. And he’s got good players around him, very good players around him, but if (the Bulls) can’t get another star there for him is he eventually going to look around and say, ‘Hey, I’ve got to work this out on my own and I’ve got to find somehow to get somewhere else so that I will have a chance to play with another star.’ The league has changed.”

“The league has changed,” Van Gundy said. “It used to be the stars wanted to sort of have their own team, they certainly wanted good players around them, but now everything’s changed. I think it started with the Celtics, bringing (Kevin) Garnett, (Paul) Pierce and (Ray) Allen together and everybody saw that and decided, ‘Look, this is the only way we’re going to win.’”

Rose isn’t bolting. Not anytime soon. He just signed a new max five-year extension to his rookie deal that kicks in next season, he is not a free agent until the summer of 2017. Which means really we are four years away from him even having the leverage to try and force a trade, if he wanted to. And right now he doesn’t.

But even the Bulls have looked around the landscape of the East and realized they need another star. That is why the odd-deals and short-term contracts the next couple of years. With just a couple moves (amnesty Carlos Boozer, for example) they could have the flexibility to go after another max player to pair with Rose. They can try to recruit and build a super team of their own.

But Rose isn’t bolting. Sorry Stan. Can’t help you with this one.

As a side tangent, somehow the idea of the elite NBA stars finding a way to play together has become distasteful to some. Even though that’s how the NBA has always been — Bill Russell had Bob Cousy and Tommy Heinsohn and a boatload of Hall of Famers; Magic Johnson had Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and James Worthy; Larry Bird had Kevin McHale and Robert Parish; Michael Jordan had Scottie Pippen; Shaquille O’Neal needed Kobe Bryant as much as the other way around.

What seems to bother people is that now the players have the power rather than the teams in some cases. That Oklahoma City is more “organic” than Miami. Because it’s fine if management puts together stars, but we don’t want the players to control their own destiny? Rooting for management to take back control seems anti-freedom to me, but root for what you want.

The fact is, stars finding a way to play together and get to the spots they want is a fact of life in the NBA now. And I think that the players having leverage and not just being pawns of the owners is a good thing.

  1. bullysix - Aug 22, 2012 at 3:42 PM

    A lot of speculation on what a player might do 5 years from now. I say 5 years from now Stan will have as much a hair as his brother.

    I find a lot of coaches who get handed the punk slip have become mouth wash speakers. They say some of the wildest sh*t, but how since he can predict Rose’s future how about predicting his own. Where will be the next job he gets fired from, without sniffing a NBA title?

  2. jziii - Aug 22, 2012 at 5:28 PM

    “Rooting for management to take back control seems anti-freedom to me, but root for what you want.”

    Others have said it in this thread, but not all that clearly. I think you are missing the point, Kurt. What offends a lot of people is the “rich-get-richer” way these things happen. It’s not anything close to an even playing field for all 30 teams, and the fans of most teams have little or no hope that their team will have a chance to compete with the big boys from year to year. (You can say that’s because those teams have lousy management, which is partly true, but another part is the lack of depth of talent in the NBA right now.) And even if their team has a big star, they know that he may not stick around for long. It must be painful to be an Orlando Magic fan, seeing your franchise’s two biggest superstars bail on you…

  3. isd87 - Aug 22, 2012 at 8:41 PM

    ” But even the Bulls have looked around the landscape of the East and realized they need another star.” The Bulls with one “star” have won more games and advanced further in the playoffs than the Knicks and Lakers two teams that have 2-3 All-Stars. Even the Heat with 2 Superstars and an All-Star have won less regular season games than the Bulls. The Mavericks had 1 star and now that one star has the same amount of rings as Lebron James, Carmelo Anthony, and Amare Stoudemire. You don’t need multiple star or superstars to contend.

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