Derrick Rose is looking towards next season as an opportunity to lead his young Detroit Pistons team.
To do this, Rose plans on emulating a player who did something very similar last year: Jimmy Butler. Surrounded by young talent, Butler led his young, five-seed squad on an outstanding Finals run.
Rose says he and fellow veteran Blake Griffin are faced with a similar opportunity moving forward, according to Keith Langlois of Pistons.com.
“I look at that and I look at our team, we have the same thing,” Rose said. “We have a lot of young guys. It’s up to them how good they want to become. We’ll do as much as we can do to push them and set an example.”
Rose didn’t feel at liberty to take a strong leadership role as a first-year player last season. But now, the former MVP plans to step up alongside Griffin as a veteran leader.
“I know when to give and I know when to take and right now my job is to try to help [Griffin] as one of the leaders and voicing my opinion,” Rose said. “Now I’ve got a year under my belt, so I should be able to say something. I’m not going to say something just off of what I did in the past. The past is the past. I’m just trying to take everything in and be appreciative of where I’m at and how far I made it in this league.”
If you’re a fan of the NBA, you know Derrick Rose’s story. From the jump, Rose was one of the most explosive and talented players in the league, earning the MVP trophy in 2010-11 when he averaged 25 points per game.
A tragic string of brutal knee injuries stalled his incredible career for years. In 2018, Rose began his resurgence, putting up solid numbers for Minnesota. He continued this production last year in his first season with the Pistons, averaging 18 ppg.
Rose singled out Detroit first-round draft pick Killian Hayes as a young player that he’ll work especially hard on. The 11-year pro plans to use some of the same strategies Kobe Bryant used on him as a young player with the USA Olympic team.
“They’d pick us up full court, trap us, make us feel uncomfortable,” Rose said. “I’ve kind of got to do the same thing with him – make it uncomfortable for him so when he’s in the game, it feels normal. I’m not worried about him, but being an older guy, my job is to prep him.”
Matching what Butler did in Miami is a lofty goal, but Rose certainly seems to be in the right mindset. With the struggles the Pistons have faced in recent years, they can use every bit of Derrick Rose magic they can get.