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#pounditMonday, June 21, 2021

Report: Derrick Rose was unwilling to accept bench role with Lakers

The great Allen Iverson once said, “I don’t know any former MVP that come off the bench.” Now Derrick Rose appears to be living by those words as well.

ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne reported on Tuesday that the Los Angeles Lakers made a “strong push” for Rose before he signed with the Cleveland Cavaliers, but he was unwilling to take on a bench role for them.

The implications here seem to be twofold. For one, it’s further confirmation that the Lakers plan to start and develop No. 2 pick Lonzo Ball right away. For another, it may be evidence that Rose still sees himself as starter-caliber.

Of course, Rose could end up coming off the bench for the Cavs anyway, but he might not have wanted the double whammy of being relegated to the second unit if he wasn’t going to compete for a championship. Then again, there’s the whole Kyrie Irving situation right now in Cleveland, which begs the question of if Rose was promised the starting job before he committed to the Cavs. LeBron James’ reported mindset seems to be fueling those rumors, and only time will tell what role the former All-Star Rose will have in Cleveland.

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