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Tuesday, March 18, 2014
Westbrook confident Rose will bounce back

By Nick Friedell

CHICAGO -- Oklahoma City Thunder star Russell Westbrook can relate to Derrick Rose's plight, and he's confident the Chicago Bulls star will return to being a superstar in due time after undergoing a second knee surgery in as many years.

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"Very confident," Westbrook said before Monday's game against the Bulls. "I've talked to him numerous times. He's a tough guy as you guys know. He does a great job of coming out and competing. It's unfortunate he had to be hurt and be out another year, but he's going to come back the same DRose he was before."

Westbrook tore the lateral meniscus in his knee during last year's playoffs and has been dealing with the injury off and on since then. Rose didn't have the exact same injury, tearing the medial meniscus, but Westbrook understands what his counterpart is going through in rehab.

"Just being confident," Westbrook said of the toughest part of the climb back. "You got to be confident in yourself and your health and knowing that the rehab, all the work you put in, it's paid off."

Thunder star Kevin Durant, who worked out with Westbrook and Rose in Santa Monica, Calif., the past few years under the direction of personal trainer Rob McClanaghan, isn't worried about Rose returning to form.

"I'm very confident he's going to come back," Durant said. "He works extremely hard. The medical staffs that we have in this league, around this country, they are so advanced. He's definitely going to get the right treatment and I'm confident he's going to come back and I'm sure the Bulls organization and the Bulls fans are confident as well."

Rose continues to put in more rehab work, but Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau has repeatedly said that it is unlikely Rose will come back to play this season.