Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose appeared in just his third live NBA game in almost a year and a half on Wednesday night. He showed he is finally ready to return. Rose scored 22 points in 22 minutes in his team’s preseason win over the Detroit Pistons. Now that he appears to be fully recovered from major reconstructive knee surgery, the 25-year-old feels he’s in the best condition of his career.
“I think I’m way more explosive now,” Rose told reporters on Wednesday, via ESPNChicago.com. “Like getting to the rim. I think I can take contact a little bit better. And as far as jumping-wise, I think I can jump even higher. They tested my vertical — I increased it by 5 inches. I just didn’t show it yet because there’s no need to.”
Rose claims his vertical has improved from 37 inches to 42 inches. He admitted that clearing the mental hurdles in the wake of his torn ACL has been the biggest challenge.
“The biggest thing is after you have an ACL or any injury, it’s the mental part,” Rose said. “And for me not to think about anything no more and actually be reacting to the defense and the offense, it feels great knowing that I’m safe. I don’t have to worry about anything at all, even if I go to the hole and get contact and fall any type of way, that I could easily get up and bounce right back and play the way that I normally know how to play.”
Last year, Rose was reportedly cleared by doctors but chose to remain sidelined until he felt confident dunking off of his left foot. Now that his vertical leap has supposedly improved, it’s probably safe to say he has reached that point. There should be no more nasty letters coming from fans who are inspired by local radio stations.Google+