When Derrick Rose suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament to his left knee in the first round of last year’s NBA playoffs, Chicago Bulls fans immediately began counting the days until his return. Eleven months later, they are still counting, but are also fully engaged in hand-wringing and anxious uncertainty as the waiting continues and Rose’s return this season is no longer a question of when, but if.
“It could be tomorrow where I feel I can play next game,” Rose said after a Bulls practice last week. “Nobody knows but God.”
For months after the injury, Rose’s rehabilitation appeared routine, filled with updates on walking, running and shooting the basketball. Now, with the Bulls fighting for playoff position, Rose’s progress has stalled. He has been medically cleared but remains on the bench, creating mystery and confusion around his recovery.
Rose, 24, an All-Star point guard and the league’s most valuable player in 2011, began participating in full-contact practices in January. In February, he was cleared for full-court scrimmages, which were supposed to be among the final steps before a comeback. Instead, there has been only a never-ending Rose watch.
Dwyane Wade wasn’t in the lineup for the Miami Heat Sunday, sitting out the reigning NBA champions’ game against the Charlotte Bobcats because of right knee soreness.
It’s possible Wade could be back in the lineup as early as today’s game at Orlando.
“He got hit in the knee a couple games back and it is just sore, bruised,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. “So we are going to be very proactive and get some treatment and hopefully he feels better [today].”