ESPN Chicago Bulls superstar point guard Derrick Rose needs surgery on his injured right knee and is out indefinitely. The Bulls updated Rose’s status Saturday, one day after the former league MVP suffered the injury against the Portland Trail Blazers. Rose underwent an MRI in Los Angeles on Saturday, a test that revealed a medial meniscus tear in his knee. The three-time All-Star sat out last season recovering from a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee. Now, it’s his other knee that’s injured.The injury occurred in the third quarter against the Trail Blazers. Rose lost his footing while trying to change direction to get back on defense when Nicolas Batum stole a pass from Joakim Noah and started the other way. Rose limped across the court and couldn’t put any weight on his knee. After the Blazers scored, he came out of the game during a timeout. It didn’t appear there was any contact on the play. Rose was unable to return and was on crutches afterward. He will not accompany the Bulls for the remaining four games on their six-game trip. The Bulls will face the Los Angeles Clippers Sunday without Rose. “I feel bad for him,” said Clippers forward Blake Griffin who suffered a meniscus tear in July 12 during Olympic training. “You never want to see somebody go down. Obviously, I’ve experienced a couple of knee injuries, including the meniscus. The good news is that it’s not nearly as bad as the one that he just went through. I wish him the best.” Even though the injury isn’t as serious as a torn ACL, losing Rose for any chunk of time is obviously a huge blow for a team expecting to challenge LeBron James and the Miami Heat for supremacy in the Eastern Conference with its franchise player back. The Bulls (6-5) were even eyeing a championship run for the first time since the Michael Jordan-Scottie Pippen era. Now, there’s a big cloud hanging over the franchise. And once again, it centers on Rose. The latest injury rekindled memories of the 2012 playoff opener against Philadelphia, when he crumpled to the court near the end of the game with a torn ACL in his left knee. That sent the top-seeded Bulls toward a first-round exit and put them in a holding pattern last season while their star recuperated. Many thought he would return at some point, particularly after he started practicing without restrictions. Instead, his recovery took on almost a circus-like feel. Fans saw him shooting and dunking before games last season and wondered why he wasn’t playing. Meanwhile, the Bulls fought injuries and illnesses on the way to 45 wins and a first-round playoff victory over Brooklyn before falling to Miami. Along the way, his image took a hit. Adidas released videos documenting his progress, but Rose mostly stayed in the background, saying little about his recovery. That changed midway through the season. There was also speculation of a rift with the organization after older brother Reggie Rose ripped management for standing pat at the trade deadline, but Derrick Rose denied that. All those issues faded into the background with Rose back this season. He had insisted he was returning better than ever, had no doubts he would regain his MVP form, but he was off to an up-and-down start after a dominant preseason. A sore hamstring caused him to miss a game, and he is shooting just 35.4 percent. He was looking better the past two games, with 19 points in a loss at Denver and 20 against Portland.
I feel bad for Derrick Rose, his Bulls teammates, and the entire city of Chicago. The Bulls lost their former NBA MVP, their leader, and the face of their franchise for the entire 2012-2013 NBA season. The team banded together, still won a playoff series, and the entire city of Chicago said “Just wait until Rose comes back.” NBA experts picked the Bulls to win the Eastern Conference led by a returning Rose, upending the Miami Heat, en route to becoming NBA Champions. Those predictions took a major hit. Rose came back, hurt his other knee, and now the team needs to did deep and win without him again. That’s a tall order, but they have done it once, and hopefully this injury does not end the season of their superstar point guard. You have to wonder though, is Rose the next Penny Hardaway, an ultra talented point guard who took the league by storm who suffered several injuries and was never the same again? I hope not, Rose is too much of a joy to watch, and he is one of the mentally toughest players out there. Rehab. Get better. Come back stronger.