Doug Thonus hit the nail on the head: Derrick Rose should be drawing more contact, offensively.
Doug Thonus at Bulls Confidential put it best this morning — that Derrick Rose’s next step is more like a simple shift from the blacktop to the professional game:
This slight difference in his game could make him a 24-25 PPG overnight, even without a serious jumpshot. Sure, fast don’t lie, but competitive
sport is best dominated when players exploit their greatest skills to
force opponents into best case scenarios that are still to your benefit.
Ten players last season scored 23+ PPG. All had at least six trips to the FT line per game. Eight got to the line at least seven times per game.
Dwyane Wade — the most consistent 24+ PPG scorer over the last six years — gets to the FT line more than nine times per game over his career.
It’s clear that new head coach Tom Thibodeau recognizes something special in Rose’s athleticism and guts to give him free reign to be a 20-shot per game volume shooter. He a 48% shooter, so even being conservative, there’s little reason to believe his per game line can’t look like 9-for-20 from the field — with two 3-pointers every three games — on top of going 6-for-8 from the FT line. The conservative result is a 24.7 PPG by actually slightly simplifying Rose’s natural game a fraction of a notch. And-1s are easy threes, right?
Not drawing contact is kind of a waste of Rose’s elite speed, ball
security, court vision, and aggressiveness. No one here is saying that
Rose should start offering himself to be tossed around like a ragdoll as Allen Iverson and
Dwyane Wade have done to create Hall of Fame careers because — and I think Thonus shares this sentiment — we’d like
Rose to actually have a very long career where he plays a lot of games
per season on a consistent basis. But Rose’s speed should be forcing
opponents into instinctual damage control measures that put him at the
line and negate his missed shots.
What’s odd is that Rose does just this on defense. Instead of
over-reaching for steals and blocks that he just isn’t skilled enough to
produce yet or when he simply just gets beat with a good move, his
default is to stop the play with contact.
This is what confuses me about him not forcing beneficial physicality on
offense. His finishing skills are so aggressive and violent and he
fully understands what to do when he gets beat by good PG’s on the other
end, but doesn’t translate this into his game.