We all know about the recent knee injuries that have plagued NBA star and Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose for the past few years. This has many believing that his basketball playing days are numbered.
I have followed Rose since his college playing days at Memphis under John Calipari and instantly knew that he would be one- and -done. As the NCAA basketball season progressed, it became clearly apparent that Rose would more than likely be the number 1 overall pick in the upcoming 2008 NBA draft.
Rose led Memphis to the final four and the NCAA finals against the Kansas Jayhawks, a game in which they ultimately loss. Approximately one month after the loss to Kansas, the NCAA sent a letter to Memphis stating that Rose had "an invalidated standardized test score the previous year at Chicago's Simeon High School". During January 2009, the NCAA sent another letter, charging Memphis with knowing that Rose had someone else take his SAT for him. There were also the reports that some of Roses’grades were altered on his high school transcripts prior to entering college.
In August of 2009, the NCAA vacated Memphis' 2007–08 season. It took the position that because the Educational Testing Service voided Rose's SAT score after Rose's freshman year at Memphis, he would be retroactively declared ineligible. The NCAA also determined that even without the questions about his test score, Rose would have lost his eligibility in December 2007 due to his brother Reggie Rose traveling with the team for free on several occasions.
Rose had all of this cloud of controversy surrounding him during his rookie season in the NBA, but obviously it didn’t affect his play on the court because he became an instant success and revived the Chicago Bull’s franchise.
Rose may not have been the smartest student in the world, but one thing is clearly evident, he is a survivor! Rose was born and raised in the Englewood area, one of the most dangerous neighborhoods in Chicago and faced many challenges in life.
After suffering his third serious knee injury in the past four years back in February, there’s still the uncertainty of what Roses’ NBA future holds. In my opinion, Englewood and Chicago toughened Rose to handle negative situations like injuries!
I am sure he looked back at his past negative circumstances/surroundings and gained some inspiration realizing that he has been through far worse in his life than basketball-related injuries.
Barring any bad investments or mismanagement of his finances, Rose who is 26 years of age, should be just fine if his recent knee injuries shorten his NBA career. His first 4 years in the NBA paid under the Rookie pay scale with an average of around $5.6 million per season totaling $22.4 million.
I realize that Rose made some bad choices as it pertains to Memphis, but one of the best decisions he has made so far during his basketball career period was back in December 2011. During the season, he and the Bulls agreed to a contract extension (5yr/$94 million) which became effective during the 2012-13 NBA season.
Why is that such a great decision? Rose could have opted to become a free agent and offer his services to other NBA teams after the season! Remember, Rose suffered his first major knee injury during the 2011-12 NBA playoffs. Imagine not having signed an extension prior to suffering an ACL injury! What team in the NBA would have offered him maximum money?
Rose is making $18.8 million this season and even if he doesn’t play another minute in the NBA, he is due $20 million next season and $21 million during the 2016-17 season, the last under the 5 year maximum deal. In the NBA, a player's full contract is guaranteed!
At the end of his current contract in 2017, Rose will have grossed $116 million during a 9 year NBA career. That isn’t bad money for a young man from Englewood! Just goes to show that it doesn’t necessarily take a college degree to make smart choices!
Being labeled a one-and-done doesn't always have to be considered a negative term! Besides he can always go back to college and work towards obtaining a degree. Hopefully a college that will have his best interest in mind this go round.