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Are you concerned about Derrick Rose's knee?

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(Total votes: 3,132)

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Normal to be concerned about Rose

Friedell By Nick Friedell
ESPNChicago.com
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Now a year and a half since Derrick Rose played in his last regular-season NBA game, Chicago Bulls fans should absolutely be worried by him sitting out a game, as he did Saturday in Rio. But in the same breath they should realize that knee soreness isn't a completely surprising occurrence for an elite athlete trying to recover from ACL surgery. Rose said as much after practice on Monday.

"I'm fine with (people asking about my knee), man," Rose said. "It's just something I've got to deal with. Does it get irritating? Sometimes, but I had the injury and it's something all of us have to go through.

Fans can argue all day about whether or not Rose should have come back last season after being medically cleared to play, but that isn't going to change what's happening at the moment. Rose made his decision and now he and the Bulls have to deal with the day-to-day distractions that will come throughout the year whenever the former MVP's knee is sore.

"That's the reality of the way things are," Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau begrudgingly admitted on Monday.

No matter how many times Rose or the Bulls come out this season and say Rose's knee is fine, the only thing that will calm doubters down is Rose doing what he did before the injury -- dominating games. The key is for Rose to be able to do it on a consistent basis. Until he does, any time he goes to the rim, or winces in pain, or misses a game for any reason, fans will -- and should -- be worried by what is going on with his knee.

After all, as the city of Chicago has learned over the past couple of years: If Rose goes down, the Bulls' championship hopes go down with him.

Nick Friedell is a reporter for ESPNChicago.com.

Soreness part of rehab process

Padilla By Doug Padilla
ESPNChicago.com
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Of course there is cause for concern when "sore knee" and "Derrick Rose" are combined in the same sentence, but let's not dive off the deep end here.

The Chicago Bulls point guard might have been practicing hard since training camp started, but nothing was going to test his surgically-repaired left knee like actual games. After two preseason games and a long flight to Brazil, Rose spoke up about his soreness and the Bulls simply took the extremely conservative route by letting him take a game off.

Kudos to coach Tom Thibodeau and his staff for not feeling pressured to play Rose on Saturday in front of an international audience down in Rio de Janeiro.

After practice Monday, Rose spent nearly an hour shooting the ball, and while he wasn't exactly running hard, he never appeared to be uncomfortable.

The reality is that for the rest of his career, Rose might forever need to take a game off in the preseason after a handful of games to rest a sore knee that underwent major surgery.

Rose admitted last week that he didn't play pickup games in the offseason -- never has -- which means that the Oct. 5 game at Indiana and the Oct. 7 game at St. Louis against the Memphis Grizzlies marked his first chances to see "real" game conditions in 18 months.

Nobody is claiming to be a doctor here, but what Rose could have been experiencing this past weekend was the common act of breaking scar tissue that formed after his surgery.

Imagine if Rose came back during last year's playoffs and had to sit after just two games because of a sore knee. There would have been panic in the streets. No, this just seems to be a player getting back up to speed in training camp after a previous surgery.

There seem to be so many camps when it comes to Rose and his injury. There was the camp that felt he waited too long to return and lost faith in the former MVP. There was the camp that fully accepted his decision to play it safe and wait for this year.

Now there is the camp that thinks this is doom and gloom for Rose, versus the one that is comfortable letting the kid stretch out his knee and work it back into game shape.

Pessimist or optimist? Pick your approach.

Doug Padilla is a reporter for ESPNChicago.com.

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