Welcome to your Sad Derrick Rose update. When video of Sad Derrick Rose making a sad dunk began circulating around the internet a few weeks ago, many people pointed out that Rose jumped off his right foot rather than his left, which sits below his sad, surgically repaired left knee. It turns out that Rose is not yet comfortable dunking off of his left foot, and won't return to the floor until he is, even though he has been cleared to play by team doctors:
Derrick Rose's doctor has cleared the Chicago Bulls' star to play, a team source said, but his long-awaited return to the lineup won't occur until he can confidently dunk off his left foot, Rose has told the team.
Rose, who had surgery to repair a tear to the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee on May 12, has been videotaped dunking off each foot, but more casually than he would during a game. A source said that although he has been practicing and scrimmaging hard, he told the Bulls that until he feels "in his mind" he can confidently dunk off his left foot in a game situation, he is not 100 percent mentally ready to return to competition.
"Mentally ready" is never a phrase you want to hear in regards to a player's return from catastrophic injury, although it's hard to blame Rose for his trepidation. He knows that his reckless athleticism is simultaneously his best weapon and the biggest threat to his future health. At some point, he's going to have to get over that mental hump and not be afraid to try things like this, but for now, he remains Sad Derrick Rose.