Derrick Rose should come back now. Or not.

May 01, 2013|By Jack M Silverstein | For RedEye

With Kirk Hinrich expected to miss Game 6 against Brooklyn on Thursday and Richard Hamilton glued to the bench, the Bulls backcourt could use a boost. So, is it Derrick Rose time? RedEye hit up four Bulls experts for the pros and cons of a Rose 2013 postseason appearance, along with their own most reasonable argument.

CHRISTOPHER CASON (@c4dunk)

Bulls beat reporter for Examiner.com, contributing Bulls reporter for CSNChicago.com

Why Rose should come back

Derrick Rose should return for himself – to go into the summer with a gauge on his progress, where his game is at, and what he will need to improve upon for next season. It's been a year since he last played, and while he's not in game shape, it would be good to try and shake off some of the rust just to help clear the final mental hurdle.

Why Rose should not come back

Forgetting the fact that he's not in game shape, fans have taken the "dominating in practice" reporters too seriously. The Bulls weren't running 5-on-5 scrimmages, so he was "dominating" only because he was fresh. Inserting him now against one of the better point guards in the league in Deron Williams or against the league-best Miami Heat when the games only get more physical wouldn't be a smart move on his or the organization's part.

Say he's done for the postseason. Then he gets a full summer to actually work on his game and body and will get a full training camp to begin next season.

Most reasonable argument

I lean more toward he shouldn't come back. It's already been a year and he'll actually have this summer to work on his game, fine tune and add some things in preparation for next season. Don't forget: He was learning to walk again last summer, so this summer is all about getting back to basketball.

BRYAN CRAWFORD (@BryanCraw4D)

Bulls reporter for NBC Chicago and RedEye, contributor to CSN Chicago and SLAM Magazine

Why Rose should come back

D-Rose has to play sometime, right? Practice doesn't really count and at some point, he's going to have throw himself into live competition in order to regain his feel for the game and regain the confidence in his surgically repaired knee. It's hard to do that from the sidelines.

Why Rose should not come back

What's the rush? Why is this season so important? How come no one is thinking about the next five or six years? If Derrick doesn't feel like he's ready, then why force it? People should learn to accept and respect the personal decision he's making on his health and career.

Most reasonable argument

If you're thinking long-term, then Derrick Rose sitting out and taking all the time he needs to recover makes sense. People seem to have this idea that if he comes back, he'll save the season and guide the Bulls to a title, but that's just unrealistic.

JASON AZUL (@TheBullsShow)

Co-host of The Bulls Show podcast

Why Rose should come back

I caveat this position with the assumption that Derrick is 100 percent healthy, both physically and mentally. Despite the well-documented "medical clearance" two months ago, only Derrick knows how he's feeling. While I obviously respect the profession, doctors have been wrong before (Grant Hill, Penny Hardaway, Danny Granger, etc.). Even the Knicks' Iman Shumpert, who tore his ACL the same day as Rose, has recently stated he still hasn't completely regained his athleticism.

Regardless, if Derrick no longer has any lingering issues with his knee or his mind, returning against (specifically) the Heat is a "nothing to lose" situation—at least figuratively. Either he comes back as a savior and miraculously leads the Bulls to victory over the evil empire and overwhelming favorites from South Beach, or he simply isn't enough to defeat LeBron James and company—a scenario many basketball fans and experts expect, but would still appease the masses demanding his return.

Why Rose should not come back

After 369 days since the last time he played, Derrick Rose will undoubtedly struggle in his first games back. The rust will outweigh his "fresh legs" relative to other players during this time of year. Case in point, Rose only shot 32 percent from the field and averaged 15 points in the five games he played last year after missing the previous 12 due to an injury, a stretch that included the infamous overtime benching against the Miami Heat after shooting 1-for-13.

If Rose returned just for these playoffs, not only would the Bulls be throwing him into the proverbial postseason fire of increased intensity and physicality, but would be doing so against arguably the best perimeter defensive team in the league. You have to learn how to crawl before you walk/run/fly. Perhaps crawling this October is much more reasonable than trying to fly in May against the defending champs.

Most reasonable argument

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