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Lost in Paul George story, Derrick Rose looked good in USA Basketball exhibition

Aug 4, 2014, 12:45 PM EDT

With good reason, Paul George and his horrific injury were the focus after Friday night’s USA basketball exhibition in Las Vegas. That story will reverberate through the NBA for years.

But if Paul George had not been the story, Derrick Rose would have been.

[RELATED: Will Paul George's injury change USA roster for 2016?]

We had told you that this week Rose was getting rave reviews out of Team USA practices.

“Derrick’s played great, not good, and hasn’t held anything back,” coach Mike Krzyzewski said.

“He’s playing well,” fellow Chicagoan Anthony Davis added. “He’s playing out of his mind. He’s being Derrick Rose.”

Friday night he showed everyone, with quickness and explosion that looked like his old self. He blew by some of the world’s elite players like they were standing still. He was quick end-to-end and showed some nice passing skills as well. He looked like the guy who was the league’s youngest MVP.

[RELATED: Derrick Rose explodes past defense for two-handed slam at hoops showcase (VIDEO)]

All week Rose talked about the maturity of his game now, for example he developed a floater so he wouldn’t have to take the contact going to the rim all the time (after a couple practices he stayed on the court to work on just that shot). He knows he’s got some real talent around him and he doesn’t have to carry the scoring load the same way.

“I’m able to control my body a little bit more, using my speed more, being smart with my speed rather than just running wild out there,” Rose said of his game. “I’’ve become a smarter player, but I’m mad it took me seven years to learn it.”

There was still a little rust on Rose, as is to be expected. But that’s the reason he should be with Team USA this summer, to shake that off and get his confidence back now.

Here’s the key thing, before George went down we were all thinking the same thing: If that Derrick Rose can play 75+ games next season, even if the Cavaliers get Kevin Love to pair with LeBron James and Kyrie they are going to have some serious competition to get out of the East.

[RELATED: Rose says Bulls are more talented than at any point in his career]

  1. dexregeant - Aug 4, 2014 at 12:50 PM

    and he can still jump out of the gym..he hops look effortless!

  2. 4thquartermagic - Aug 4, 2014 at 1:32 PM

    Everyone should be rooting of this guy to recover and continue living his dream.

    I get not cheering for him to beat your team and win a championship but rooting against watching him play is just silly.

    The guy is incredible to watch.

    • sportsfan18 - Aug 4, 2014 at 2:18 PM

      Well said.

      • cruzan80 - Aug 4, 2014 at 3:55 PM

        @sportsfan7 @4thquarter

        Awe! Listen to the two biggest Knick trolls gushing over their MCM!

        Luckily for ya’ll I’m actually a genuine SPORTS FAN, not of just my team but of the NBA.

        It is good to see Rose healthy again. I hope to see Rondo & Stoudamire healthy next season too. The more good players on the floor will only equal better basketball for everyone.

      • 4thquartermagic - Aug 4, 2014 at 4:05 PM

        @cruzan80

        I’m critical of Carmelo because as the game of basketball matters less to him then the celebrity that comes with it.

        As for trolling your beloved Knicks. Why would I waste my time trolling a franchise that hasn’t won a playoff series in 13 years?

        Your team isn’t relevant.

        Just like the Dallas Cowboy, the team doesn’t matter to anyone except their own loud-mouth fans.

      • sportsfan18 - Aug 4, 2014 at 4:05 PM

        @ cruzan

        uh, look further below at what I wrote before you posted this where I said it’s better to have all stars healthy and playing.

        I said I even wanted Kobe to play last season. I dislike the Lakers as much as the Knicks.

        But I want all players healthy, Kobe and all Knicks players too.

        nice try though Cruzan.

        better luck next time.

      • cruzan80 - Aug 4, 2014 at 4:33 PM

        “Why would I waste my time trolling a franchise that hasn’t won a playoff series in 13 years?”

        If that’s true…why are you on EVERY Knick post?????

    • cruzan80 - Aug 4, 2014 at 5:08 PM

      4thquartermagic – Aug 4, 2014 at 3:48 PM
      Your talking about a franchise that gave Amare Stoudamire a blank check.
      Smart moves aren’t in their wheelhouse.

      4thquartermagic – Aug 1, 2014 at 4:28 PM
      Dude has an awkward name.
      “In the meantime, he’ll try to earn some minutes behind Carmelo Anthony.”
      Guess he’ll be relegated to the bench until Melo gets his 30+ in another Knicks blowout loss and decides to rest.

      4thquartermagic – Jul 30, 2014 at 1:43 PM
      “Hey Earl, what color are the lenses in those frames?
      Rose colored?
      Thought so.”

      4thquartermagic – Jul 30, 2014 at 1:55 PM
      And your out of your mind if you think the Knicks will finish in the top 4.
      That team from 2012-2013 is long gone. The second best player from that team is in Dallas now.
      That roster is garbage.

      4thquartermagic – Jul 30, 2014 at 2:16 PM
      Yeah because he’s telling you what you want to hear.
      Bet you also believe Melo “cares about winning more then money” too.

      “Why would I waste my time trolling a franchise that hasn’t won a playoff series in 13 years?”

      LOL! I don’t know 4thquarter…why do you?????

      • 4thquartermagic - Aug 4, 2014 at 5:24 PM

        I’m not naive to the fact that PBT needs to pay its bills by catering to the largest NBA markets.

        Which is why currently terrible NBA teams like the Knicks and Lakers get 20 posts a day and championship teams like the Spurs are lucky to get 5.

        You hate facts about how awful your franchise is.
        I hate seeing 20 posts about an awful franchise.

        Guess we’re both going to have to look the other way.

      • cruzan80 - Aug 4, 2014 at 5:38 PM

        @4thquarter

        Still doesn’t change the fact that you’re a troll.

        I hate the Lakers…won’t catch me trolling their 20 post per day about how much I think they stink or trying to convince everyone that Kobe is overrated & actually sucks. This is a language that will be difficult for you to understand…it’s called objectivity. I’m a bigger fan of the sport than I am a hater of one specific team.

        I don’t hate the anything post about the Knicks because NONE of it is based off facts…just hate. (i.e. “The second best player from that team is in Dallas now. That roster sucks.”)

        Anyways, I didn’t mean to rain you girl’s Derrick Rose parade…carry on…I’m sure we’ll talk again on the next Knick post.

    • erking1991 - Aug 4, 2014 at 8:05 PM

      Hopefully because I don’t want all the Chicago fans making excuses when my Cavs knock them outta the playoffs in 4.

  3. asimonetti88 - Aug 4, 2014 at 1:39 PM

    The thing that gets me is how he maintains that speed even with the ball. Not a lot of players can be just as fast with the ball in their hands as they are without it.

  4. rosloe62 - Aug 4, 2014 at 2:20 PM

    Glad to see Rose getting back to form. Bulls will be the Beast of the East!

  5. sportsfan18 - Aug 4, 2014 at 2:21 PM

    Da Bulls!

    It’s better for all of us fans of any team to have the great players healthy and playing.

    Heck, even I wanted Kobe to play last season.

    We like the sport and yes we have our teams, but I want to see all the good players healthy and playing.

    • cruzan80 - Aug 4, 2014 at 4:34 PM

      @sportsfan

      Well said…..LOL

      • sportsfan18 - Aug 4, 2014 at 5:04 PM

        i just gave you my first ever thumbs up…

        gonna go take some aspirin now…

  6. antistratfordian - Aug 4, 2014 at 3:15 PM

    Yes, but we’ve been here before with Rose. He looked “really good” when he was trying to come back last time. The question is how will he fare in games, and if his body will hold up.

    But, frankly, even Rose at his very best isn’t quite good enough to hang with the likes of LeBron. The Bulls have to seriously decentralize their offensive government or else suffer the same fate they’ve always suffered at the hands of James.

    • rosloe62 - Aug 4, 2014 at 3:48 PM

      If you remember in Rose’s first year, if he makes that last second shot in Miami the Bull’s go up 2 games to 1. Then in the third game they started off with a double digit lead before eventually losing the game. Going back to Chicago with a 2 to1 lead instead of down 2 – 1 could have changed the whole series.
      Plus, the Bulls against LeBron and the Heat were always one of the toughest match ups.

      • antistratfordian - Aug 4, 2014 at 4:12 PM

        The last second shot you’re talking about came in Game 4. The Bulls were already down 2-1. If Rose hits one of those two game winning attempts the series is only 2-2. But LeBron locked Rose up at the end of that game. He defended Rose in the last 10 minutes and defended him on his last two game winning attempts. LBJ forced him into bad jumpers – Rose couldn’t get around him. Heat pulled away in OT.

        Rose was terrible in Game 4, btw. 27% shooting and 7 turnovers. He is usually doesn’t shoot well against LeBron’s teams (Heat and Cavs) – 42.4% for his career, 4 percentage points below his career average.

  7. chicitybulls - Aug 4, 2014 at 4:59 PM

    He did indeed look great. Happy to see him back on the court being his old quick and explosive self again. So happy for him and excited for this new season. Great depth on this team. Scoring can come from anywhere. If they can shoot like they’re capable of it’ll be hard for other teams to stop them.

  8. chicitybulls - Aug 4, 2014 at 5:03 PM

    If anybody has anything negative to say about him coming back…well I’m sorry you can’t enjoy watching great players and great basketball. Thankfully, from what I heard in the crowd on Friday and most of the comments so far, many people can enjoy it and are rooting/pulling for him and excited to see him back on the court. But there’s always at least one who cant.

  9. money2long - Aug 4, 2014 at 5:14 PM

    Nice to see some people coming around on rose.
    I am pleased. The skeptics are slowly dying. Good.

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