Derrick Rose is starting to run out of excuses this season after lasting for just 10 minutes in the Chicago Bulls 114-109 defeat to Denver Nuggets last night.
Initial reports suggested the point guard’s hamstrings were blamed yet again for his failure to reappear in the second half of Tuesday’s loss, with Rose stating he didn't want to aggravate the injury any further.
However, Rose, 26, was also quoted by the Chicago Sun Times complaining about being tired despite only playing in seven of the Bulls’ 15 league games this season.
Rose said: “[I was] just tired on both ends of the floor. Offensively, I felt like I couldn’t get to where I want to go, and defensively, just the speed of the game, I wasn’t ready for it. Fatigue-wise and just trying to be smart.”
The 2011 NBA MVP went 1-for-4 from the field in his 10 minutes on court and in truth was a passenger being carried by his team-mates as they struggled to contain the Nuggets tricky offence. The three-time NBA All-Star also provided three assists and conceded one personal foul.
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Speaking to ESPN.com, Rose admitted he was frustrated: “You can’t let it get me down. I know that at the end the setbacks are just going to be minor. It’s a long season and we just got to keep going. I should be good.”
Rose erupted on to the NBA scene by winning rookie of the year in 2009 and was arguably the most valuable player on the planet due to his young age. He was rewarded for his success in December 2011 with a five-year deal worth $94.8 million, which at the time was 30% of the Bulls salary cap.
The 26-year-old led the Bulls to the playoffs in 2011-12 but tore his ACL in the first game of the postseason. After surgery in May 2012 Rose would go on to miss the entire 2012-13 season.
Things went from bad to worse for Rose after making a comeback at the start of the 2013-14 season. In November 2013, Rose badly injured his right knee and required further surgery which ruled him out for the rest of the season.
Since making his second comeback this season, Rose has been plagued by minor injuries which have prevented him in taking part of over half of the Bulls games. However, last night’s withdrawal isn't feared to be serious and the Bulls staff are confident their star man will be fighting fit for Friday’s clash with the Boston Celtics.