It’s the second day of camp, and things have gone about as badly as possible for Derrick Rose.
First, the national media spent the day excoriating him for his comments that came on media day. After addressing the rape allegations (which he vehemently denied), he wandered into talking about the future, declaring (h/t Sean Highkin, Bleacher Report)
[I want to be] here. But when you talk about that much money, the only thing you can do is prepare for it. I’m trying to prepare, not only myself, but my family. And I’m doing this all for my son. Like I said, I’m thinking about his future. Even though we’re alright, we’re comfortable, when you talk about that x-amount of dollars, I think it raises everyone’s eyebrows, so there’s nothing wrong with being over-prepared.
While the answer is ill-advised giving the context, it wasn’t necessarily “evil” or anything. Nor was it anything like Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times made it out to be declaring of Rose:
No, getting paid when his contract is up after the 2016-17 season is priority No. 1.
Cowley and much of the rest of the national media tried to prop up a strawman argument suggesting that if a man is focused on his family, he can’t be focused on his job. And in fact, Rose was quite clear on that front:
This whole summer I had tunnel vision. My mindset was just making sure that I was working out every day, and spending as much time as possible with my son. And focusing on those two things. Making sure my family is financially stable, as far as seeing all the money that they’re passing out in this league. Just telling the truth. Just knowing that my day will be coming up soon, and it’s not for me. It’s for P.J. and his future, so that’s what I’m thinking about now.
So unless somehow working out every day is going to make him a worse basketball player, there’s really nothing amiss here. Certainly, the timing of discussing it was ill-advised and wrong-headed, but that’s it. It’s not like Rose is lounging around, collecting paychecks and laughing at fans.
Then, Jimmy Butler took an apparent swipe at Rose:
Butler on Rose’s contract comments: "He can talk about unicorns and rainbows for all I care. Just help us win some basketball games.’’
— Vincent Goodwill (@vgoodwill) September 29, 2015
But again, the context doesn’t convey what the quote does in isolation:
Whatever he’s focused on let him be focused, but I think his objective is to win a championship. Everything else, he is who he is. He can talk about unicorns and rainbows for all I care. Just help us win some basketball games.
Butler is saying he doesn’t care what Rose is focused on—his objective is to win a championship. That’s more media trying to stir the pot.
Then another story broke about how Rose “said the feud with Jimmy Butler wouldn’t exist if they weren’t two blacks.” This is not what Rose said, though. His exact words in his interview with Steve Aschburner were:
Aschburner: Jimmy Butler took his game to an All-Star level over the last several years. Much of it while you were gone. So when you came back, people started to wonder ‘now how are those guys playing together?’ The word feud was thrown out there. What’s the key to having two alpha dogs in the Bulls backcourt?”
Rose: I don’t think it’s about that. I just think that it’s a big picture. We’re two blacks. African-American guys that’s on the team. We’re just trying to find a way to get going. I think if it was the other way around it wouldn’t be that way. But, it’s just my honest opinion about it. And I just felt like me and Jimmy never had a feud. I remember seeing Jimmy in college play with my friend in JUCO. From JUCO to Marquette. Marquette, all the way up here to an All-Star. I have nothing but joy and excitement whenever you talk about Jimmy. I think it was just something to talk about at the time
Rose says he felt like he and Jimmy “never had a feud” so clearly he’s not saying they wouldn’t have a feud if they weren’t black. In fact, the entirety of the statement is the exact opposite of talking about a feud. It seems to be that he’s saying their relationship wouldn’t be portrayed as a feud if they weren’t black. Agree or disagree with that, but that seems to be his real point there, not that they wouldn’t be feuding if they weren’t black.
While all of his words definitely have a “Please, just stop talking, Derrick. For your own good, eat a very thick peanut butter sandwich,” feel to them, there’s also a morphing of what he’s said beyond his intentions, and what he intended is more important than whatever spin you can derive from twisting his words.
Then, a report came out that he admitted to a consensual relationship with the woman alleging he raped her. The documents he filed in response claimed, “The plaintiff consented to all sexual interaction and was not injured at all, and did not report, show or claim any injuries to anyone.”
So, after taking metaphorical black eyes all day, he took a literal one in the form of an elbow to his orbital socket. The Bulls press release states:
Rose was taken by the Bulls medical staff to Rush University Medical Center for testing and evaluation, which determined he sustained a left orbital fracture. After consultation with several specialists, it has been determined that he will require a surgical procedure, which will take place Wednesday at Rush. After the procedure, a timetable for return to play will be determined.
Taj Gibson has claimed ownership of the elbow. There’s no word on if there’s a budding rivalry between Rose and Gibson, or if Gibson was just acting on Butler’s orders.