Derrick Rose is back in the NBA with the Minnesota Timberwolves, and he says he is on a mission.
Rose signed with the Timberwolves on Thursday and will be with them for the rest of the season, though he will not be on the postseason roster.
Rose began the season with the Cavaliers, battled injuries, and was ultimately traded on deadline day in February. He never found a fit with Cleveland, and there were reports surrounding him saying he was considering retirement. Now that he’s had a month off, Rose says he is ready to prove people wrong.
Rose told ESPN’s Nick Friedell that he “feels great” and is motivated “big time” to prove people wrong.
“I’m 29, they’re acting like I’m 39. I’m still able to push the ball up the floor, they’re acting like I’m in a wheelchair. All these injuries — like even coming here to take my physical [the Timberwolves medical staff] looked at my physical, they couldn’t believe how my body was in good shape. Little things like that push me to go out here and work even harder, because on the outside looking in, you probably think I walk with a limp, you probably think I’m wearing ice bags every day, this and that. Man, it’s totally opposite of that,” Rose said.
Rose only averaged 9.8 points, 1.8 rebounds and 1.6 assists per game in 16 contests with Cleveland this season. If all goes well, he’ll be available to help Minnesota over the final 15 games of the regular season. Perhaps being reunited with Tom Thibodeau and some of his former Chicago Bulls teammates will help him find his way back.