10 April 2011
This is going to be one of my more emotional posts. I just got finished watching a terrific basketball game between the Bulls and the Magic and I’m riding high right now. Going right to my keyboard instead of giving myself a little bit of time to calm down. I know this game really didn’t mean that much to the Bulls but as the game went on and on I got more and more into it. I love the attitude the Bulls showed too. They could have coasted a little bit when the Magic kept sinking 3 after 3, but they kept playing and refused to lose.
Derrick Rose was incredible today. Absolutely incredible. There is no longer any question at all about who the MVP of the league is. Stan Van Gundy got that one right. Speaking of Stan, he really didn’t say anything that wrong about Derrick. He was mostly pretty complimentary of Derrick. He did say that he thinks Howard affects more possessions than Derrick, which I’m not sure I agree with, but he was sticking up for his guy and I have no problem with that.
I absolutely love the way that Derrick has responded to Van Gundy’s quotes though. My favorite thing about Michael Jordan was the way he would step up anytime anyone was critical of him or challenged him in any way. He took it personal out there on the court. If Dikembe Mutombo gave a finger wave, he would throw down on him and wave right back. If Jerry Stackhouse anointed himself the “best guard to ever come out of North Carolina” MJ would give him a quick, on the spot history lesson of who the greatest UNC guard of all time is. Now, it’s completely and totally unfair to compare Derrick to Michael… I get that. Michael is, and always will be, the greatest player to ever play basketball. However, the way that Derrick responded to Stan’s comments had me thinking of Michael all day long.
He gave Stan an up close and personal look at just who the real MVP of the league is. He just refused to let his team lose today in a game that was pretty insignificant to the Bulls. I LOVE THAT. Look at his stat line today: 39 pts, 13-17 FG, 3-5 3PT, and most importantly 10-10 FT. This was an incredible performance today. Also, how many Free Throws has he made in a row now? 29, I think? This was the guy that people said couldn’t shoot last year. Talk about working at your game. And how about that defense on Nelson on the final possession? Very great defense and showed a high basketball IQ with his knowledge of the clock.
And he sent a message to the team he will most likely be seeing in the second round. Do you think any of them honestly are feeling good about playing the Bulls in a 7 game series right now? Do you think any of them truly believe that they can stop Derrick? Sure, they were without Howard today (because he put himself ahead of the team, like so many NBA players do), but we beat them with Howard when we were without Noah. I’m not worried about that. We’ve been without key guys all season long.
I’m so pumped right now, and the most impressive thing is his best days are ahead of him. Can’t wait to see what he has in store for us in a few weeks.
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