By Brian Hanley–
(CBS) Bulls point guard Derrick Rose continues to put his mouth where his money is.
And it’s beyond tiresome.
On a day when true leaders throughout the NBA talked about what it will take to win a championship, the part-time Bull babbled on Monday at Bulls media day about concern for his family’s financial security, as if he was holding down three minimum-wage jobs.
“My mindset was I was working out every day and spending as much time as possible with my son, making sure my family is financially stable,'” Rose said. “As far as you see all the money they’re passing out in this league — just telling the truth — and knowing my day will be coming up soon. It’s not for me. It’s for (son) P.J. and his future. So that’s what I’m thinking about right now.”
That comment was unprompted, an answer to a question about whether he had mentally moved on from an ex-girlfriend’s lawsuit alleging Rose was part of a group that had sexually assaulted her. Such a disconnected response is more proof why Rose had to have high school teachers change some of his grades to graduate him from Simeon and why he had a proxy take his college-entrance exam.
Talking dollars Monday made no sense. Especially when Rose’s free-agent date is not for another two years, in summer 2017.
We didn’t hear such cra$$ thoughts emanating from other NBA camps.
“Training camp is going to be huge for us to get back together and get that chemistry where we need it to be and be ready to go,'” Warriors star Steph Curry said Monday, months removed from actually winning an NBA title.
Hate LeBron James? I’ll take the man who said his sleepless summer came from nightmares of Curry and his Golden State Warriors winning the Finals over his Cavaliers.
“Losing haunts me,'” James said.
Count Kevin Durant — who will have a much longer list of teams throwing max deals his way in summer 2016 as a free agent than Rose could dream of two years from now — among the real superstars who have their priorities straight.
“I hate losing,” Durant said after a season in which he was hampered by injuries. “I have to respect (the Warriors), but I hate seeing those guys win.”
Even Kobe Bryant, at 37, talked in terms of how he has to figure out his aging body so he can lead a young group of Los Angeles Lakers to one more championship, as long of a shot as it may be.
“I’m excited to be back on the court,” Bryant said Monday. “I’m excited to be out there with the young players who are starting their careers, starting their journeys. I’m excited to help them out and kind of show them things I’ve learned. I’m as excited for this season as I’ve been in a long time.”
Bryant’s not focused on a farewell tour, despite five championship rings and an award-studded career.
“I couldn’t do that,” Bryant said. “It could get to become a pain in the ass. But when I sit back and think about it, it’s actually cool, because it means that you’ve had a really good career and people want to know when the time is coming for you to hang ’em up. Like me, don’t like me, (but people) respect the career that I’ve had. I think that’s a pretty damn cool thing.”
Meanwhile, it’s getting tougher to like Rose. He turns 27 Sunday and no longer comes across as the humble kid who turned to his mom at his (likely one-and-only) MVP award press conference in 2011 and said, “Mom, we finally made it.”
Nowadays, making it means more and more Benjamins for Rose. He’s banked about $60 million $59.7 from the Bulls while missing 212 of the past 312 regular-season games. The $185-million contract with Adidas isn’t bad, either.
But while James was up at night over the summer thinking about coming up short on the court, Rose was counting future free-agent dollars instead of sheep.
“I’m preparing for it,” Rose said of free agency in 2017. “I’m trying to prepare myself and my family. It’s all for my son, even though we’re comfortable. You talk about ‘x’ amount of dollars, it raised everybody’s eyebrows. There’s nothing wrong with being overprepared.”
Comfortable? Trying to decide whether to drive the Bentley or Rolls Royce to work is more than comfortable.
Then again, the man speaking such nonsense also was more worried last year about being ambulatory for his toddler son’s graduations and business meetings than hurrying back from injuries to the team he supposedly leads.
“I know I’m great,” Rose said. “Some people don’t know I’m great, but that’s cool … I can’t get mad at how they criticize the way I play or the way I used to play. I know I’m great.”
The guess here is there’s a great chance even the Bulls won’t offer Rose a maximum deal two years from now. And no one will criticize the team for choosing to move on from the hometown talent who has turned out to be more a curse than a blessing in recent years.