It has been a hectic few weeks for New York Knicks point guard Derrick Rose. A civil trial in Los Angeles, alleging that Rose and two friends sexually assaulted his ex-girlfriend in August 2013, cost Rose nearly two weeks of preparation. But when the judge ruled that Rose and his friends are innocent on Friday, the former NBA Most Valuable resumed his career.
The trial caused Rose to miss all but one of the Knicks’ preseason games. But coach Jeff Hornacek praised Rose for “doing his homework” as he sent Rose the team’s offensive plays while he was in LA. The early results are promising.
"He looks in pretty good shape," Hornacek said (via ESPN). "It may be a situation where we put him in. If he looks like he's tired, we'll get him out and then get him back quickly. Maybe the rotation is a little different as he first comes back."
The physical part of the game will come; the mental anguish of fighting for your freedom is what many feared could hinder Rose.
Speaking about the case, Rose revealed that he missed his son’s birthday and birthday party while he was in court. He also said that he took the case “very serious” and has prayed for the woman who accused him – an effort to move on from the ordeal. But being back on the court is "heaven" for Rose.
"It would change anyone," Rose said of the case on Saturday, his first practice in weeks. "But I spoke on it and this is all behind me now. The only thing I can focus on is worrying about the future. I love being around my teammates. I love the way that we are coming together as a team."
Now the focus will be on Rose’s health, something that has been a question mark the 2011-12 NBA season. While he did play in 66 games for the Chicago Bulls last season, the 28-year-old was still trying to recapture his MVP form.