After an 18-month absence from NBA basketball Derrick Rose finally took to the court at the United Center last night for the Chicago Bulls. The Bulls were playing the lowly Detroit Pistons without their newly acquired PG Brandon Jennings, however on this night it might not have mattered. The crowd was raucous as Rose was introduced. It was as close to Jordan returning as you could get without it being Jordan returning to face-off against LeBron. Rose had a fabulous night scoring 22 points on 6-9 shooting, while also going 9-10 from the line. Rose was a +25 in the point differential and in doing so showed some lockdown defense and few shifty moves that had been his trademark.
The game was just a precursor to a long-awaited season of anticipated success for the Chicago Bulls. The star of the team is back and his supporting cast is far better of for last year’s postseason run. This Rosy Bulls team will make a deep run into the NBA Playoffs. For all who say that Rose should’ve come back for last year’s playoffs, last night’s performance should have silenced the doubters. The apples-to-apples comparison to RGIII just seals the deal. The Bulls were never going to beat the Miami Heat and to have risked another injury would’ve been shortsighted and disastrous.
This year’s Bulls team will have a rejuvenated Derrick Rose who came back on his own schedule. Now that Rose is back the Bulls can reap the rewards of his full strength and abilities. Some of the moves that Rose was making last night had us flashing back to his NBA MVP performance. It also showed us all that after the talking and second-guessing, perhaps we were wrong to have been so insatiously impatient. Derrick Rose just turned 25 years old, and with the look of him last night he might’ve added another decade to his career and the Bulls’ long-term prospects with the decision not to rush back. We should all be bowing to the gods that we aren’t reliving the notion of Nate Robinson leading the team into suddenly uncharted waters.