So Jerry Reinsdorf said recently in a radio interview that Rose won't play until he's 100%. Hard to argue with that logic isn't it?
After seeing Joakim Noah rushed back onto the court with a badly sprained ankle that caused him to miss the Olympics, Hamilton brought back too early last season, and Rose likely rushed back initially as well, it's hard to blame Reinsdorf for being a bit cautious.
In fact, as a Bulls fan, I was begging for caution with Rose the treatment of Rose last season while he's hurt. All in all, this seems like a pretty sweet philosophy that none of us could disagree with.
However, what's interesting is that he compared the injury to Jordan's and said he wasn't going through that again. The odd thing about is the Jordan situation turned out great. What exactly does he not want to go through? Rose coming back, getting healthy, and scoring 63 in the playoffs?
At the time, there was a now infamous fight between the Bulls and Jordan about the timing of his return. Jordan, to this day, is still bitter that the Bulls didn't allow him to come back earlier and attempt to win a championship. Reinsdorf, to this day, is still pissed they brought him back as early as they did.
One of these guys would appear to have history on their side though. Jordan played well the rest of the season culminating in the 63 point scoring binge in the playoffs against the Celtics and never had a significant injury as a Bull for the rest of his career. We'll never know what would have happened if he came back earlier [though seems pretty likely they weren't getting past the Celtics either way], but it's odd that Reinsdorf uses this result as evidence to an ultra conservative treatment of his players.
From what I gather with ACL surgery, the actual ACL is ready to go after about four months. After that, there's a process to rebuild all of the strength in the leg as well as the mental trust that the knee will hold up. That mental trust will require Derrick Rose to go out there and play.
In short, if the Bulls were to hold Rose out all season long, it would actually hinder his recovery rather than help it. Would they be so insane as to try that? Seems unlikely, but Reinsdorf was pushing hard to do that with Jordan back in the day.
It's also possible that if the season gets to a certain breaking point that a lottery pick becomes more desirable than an eighth seed playoff spot. If it's Feb 1st, and the Bulls are 10 games under .500 are you rooting for them to make the playoffs or simply tank the rest of the season and get the draft choice?
After all, the Bulls have Derrick Rose specifically due to having a good team that failed to meet expectations and ended up in the lottery. Granted, the odds of winning the lottery out of the 7-14 spots is pretty pathetic even if we were fortunate enough to do it once before. We shouldn't pin our hopes on 1.7% striking again.
All in all, I'm with Reinsdorf here as long as his definition of 100% is when Rose and the doctors say he's ready to go and not two to three months after that. Rose absolutely needs to get healthy, but he also needs to get through the mental barriers, and he won't do that from the sidelines.
Of course judging by recent history, we have more to fear with the Bulls bringing him back early than we do with them bringing him back late.