Derrick Rose and his first technical foul

Remember that technical foul Derrick Rose picked up during the second quarter of Monday night’s home win over the Indiana Pacers?

Well, it was Derrick’s first. As in ever.

Said Rose: “That was my first one ever. High school, grammar school, college ever. It hurt. I said it was some b.s. It took them awhile to give me the tech. I thought it was over with. I guess it got to him. I’m running back down the court and he called it.”

My take: It’s about time.

And Mike McGraw of the Daily Herald put the feelings of many Bulls fans into words when he wrote: “Ever since he joined the Bulls, it has been a mystery how Rose can drive to the basket as often as he does and be rewarded with so few free-throw attempts. … He shot just 3 against the Pacers, but maybe standing up for himself can pay off. The first time he drove to the basket after the technical, he got a whistle and 3-point play.”

David Stern doesn’t want people to discuss this. During last season’s playoffs, the commish threatened to suspend coaches and players for critical comments about officiating. This season, the league has given referees the power to dole out quick technical fouls for even mild player reactions to calls or no-calls.

People outside of Chicago bristle when Bulls fans bring up the lack of tweets Rose has gotten over the years. Only whiners complain about no-calls, they say. He’s too strong and athletic, they tell me. He’s so incredibly fast, they insist. He successfully avoids contact, they demand.

I’ve heard it over and over.

Here’s how ESPN’s John Hollinger recently put it: “He’s so smooth, so graceful and so explosive that it’s fairly easy for him to float past opponents and drop in a layup or to launch his unusually-effective 10-foot floater or to pull up for the J while an opponent watches helplessly from the other side of the screen. Alas, none of those maneuvers get him to the line, and the next time Rose willfully draws contact to force his way there will be a first.”

According to Hoopdata, Rose attempts 5.5 shots at the rim per game. He ranks 11th in the league in that particular category. Apparently, we are expected to believe that Derrick is some kind of magician who can avoid contact like some kind of ghostly mist drifting toward the basket.

The Great Poohdini indeed.

Yes, Rose is strong, fast, and insanely athletic. Yes, he does do a very effective job of avoiding most of the contact that might otherwise occur on a standard trip through the paint. But the kid takes un-called contact all the time.

All the time.

Personally, I think Rose is being penalized for his personality. He doesn’t flail or drop like a sack of bricks when he feels contact. Unlike Kobe Bryant, he doesn’t resort to verbal flops when the various hacks and whacks he receives don’t earn him a whistle. He rarely complains. And until the other night, he had never complained loudly or rudely enough to get a tech.

And, according to McGraw, Rose vowed it wouldn’t happen again.

Said Rose: “Next time I’ve just got to hold it in and hopefully I won’t get any more techs, because I need that (fine) money. There’s a recession out here.”

Derrick was joking. But he was serious too.

It’s too bad. Not that I want Rose to start earning technicals like Rasheed Wallace or flopping all over the court like Vlade Divac. But even Michael Jordan had to lobby with the officials from time to time. Kobe does it. Paul Pierce does it. It’s called selling the foul. It’s as much a part of the game as practicing your threes. And until Rose finds a way to communicate to the officials that he’s getting hacked and grabbed on his drives, he’s going to keep getting frozen out at the free throw line.

I hate to say it. But it’s true.


15 Responses to Derrick Rose and his first technical foul

    Loren December 15, 2010 at 5:25 pm #

    Matt – You know you’re turning Rose/Bulls fans into Kobe/Lakers fans, right?

    Pause for a moment to think about that – is this really what you want?

    I’m an intermittent reader here because I’ve loved your work at Basketbawful for years. But this is the second “we get no respect” post in less than a week about the Bulls in general and Rose in particular. This crap is all over the internet and everyone outside of Chicago is sick to death of it. I understand that you’re on the reasonable end of the spectrum, and that you’re not responsible for the legion of aggrevied idiots out there. But the unreasonable take their cues from the reasonable. You’re partly culpable for helping foster the irritating “nobody respects us, they’re all against us” mentality. And for doing nothing to dispel it.

    I don’t want to argue about whether or not ESPN, the NBA, referees in general, and the secret UN black-helicopter consipiracy hate your favorite team and its best player. Maybe they do and maybe they don’t. Instead, I just want to ask – what’s so damn important about it? Why is it so crucial that the world immediately correct the horrible injustice of underrating Derrick Rose? Because every semi-related story on ESPN or CBS, every NBA chat, and any blog that gets linked seems to get flooded with hypersensitive and angry Rose-based grievances.

    If someone writes about a good team, there will be comments complaining that nobody writes about the Bulls. If someone writes about a good player, there will be angry comments about how the article disprespects Rose by not mentioning him. Stop this madness. There are 50-odd games left to play, and then the playoffs. If the team and the player are great, people will notice. Wouldn’t it be reasonable to give the media until, oh, let’s say . . . midseason? Before working yourselves up over what blatent disrespect they’re showing you simply by not paying enough attention to your team?

    Remember how irritating it was/is to have a legion of Kobe police intent on making sure nobody ever wrote anything less than divine praise for him? Or even wrote something good about another player/team without mentioning him? Look in the collective Chicago mirror and tell me that’s not happening now with Rose. How am I supposed to enjoy the guy when so many aggreived bandwagoners (egged on by their local media) are INSISTING that I must love him at all times? It just makes me want to hate him, hope he fails, and say snarky things about him. Just like Kobe.

    P.S. In that vein:
    Rose will never beat the Celtics because their trash talk will make him freeze like a deer in the headlights. All KG has to say to make him collapse into a shivering ball of fear is “You have now completed the time for this section. Please turn to the next section.”

    Gorditadog December 15, 2010 at 6:24 pm #

    Here is what Tibs needs to have the Bulls practice on, instead of basketball:

    1. Practice getting defenders to leave their feet and then jump into them. Watch tape of Kobe and Chauncey, they are good at this, and this makes you a better player in the eyes of the refs. It makes no apparent difference whether you have to jump forward, sideways, etc., just getting the defenders into the air is the key.

    2. Practice waiting for defenders to put their hand out and then quickly bring your arms through their hand while pretending it is part of your shot. Durant started this last year and now dozens of imitators are learning this move to get the refs call. Apparently this is a good basketball play, and something you should do to get to the free throw line.

    There are other ways to “draw a foul” as well. For example, sometimes you can find a guy standing in the lane and dribble up to him, lean into him and shoot. This one seems to be kind of random, it depends on who the defender is and it’s helpful if you’re LeBron James, so I’m not sure yet how you practice that one.

    What you DON’T do though, obviously, is actually get fouled. There is no percentage in that, and if you are an “elite player” you would know that.

    Jake in Minnie (and maybe Shoveling TCF for the Bears game) December 15, 2010 at 6:57 pm #

    A few observations:

    1. Boozer does this all the time, the yell to draw the foul. It works, what can I say.

    2. I noticed this also has been added to Noah’s repertoire (though not to the same extent).

    3. I absolutely HATE when a shooter will jump sideways into someone to “draw the foul”… Billups and Rondo come to mind….

    4. I also hate when someone get the ball stripped and they then jump in the air and flail their arms to “draw the foul”

    Savage December 15, 2010 at 7:48 pm #

    I heard a report on ESPN that Bulls are having discussions with Denver regarding acquiring JR Smith. He is a great scorer and athletic enough to be a good defender but his decision making on the court could be better. Not sure how I feel about it what do you all think?

    Matt McHale December 15, 2010 at 8:06 pm #

    Loren — I appreciate your input and sorry if my post wasn’t clear. Not trying to deify Rose. Just making the point that he doesn’t get calls he should get and I think it’s probably because he doesn’t do a good job selling that. That’s just part of the game…a part Rose seemingly doesn’t want to play.

    My second point is that some people want to brush aside the possibility that Rose doesn’t get some calls because he somehow manages to evade all contact, which is ridiculous, and if they watched every Bulls game, they’d know that.

    Gorditadog — I don’t necessarily want the Bulls to sink to those kinds of tactics.

    Jake — Yeah, more tactics I don’t love. But, as you point out, they do tend to work…

    Savage — Smith is one of those guys who never seems to “get it.” Low basketball IQ, dubious decision making, and a real hothead. Not sure we want to potentially disrupt chemistry for somebody like him.

    Gorditadog December 15, 2010 at 8:47 pm #

    Matt- I am with you. I was trying to be sarcastic- Joakim and I both seem to get misinterpreted.

    As to J.R. Smith, he is a very talented player, but has maturity issues. I think he is a lot like Tyrus, he plays with a lot of passion and intensity, but can be frustrating as hell when he won’t stay inside his game.

    He sure can shoot, and I really think he can play defense too. I was watching the Nuggets-Magic game last night and trying to decide whether I would rather have J.R. or J.J. Redick on the Bulls. They both played well last night, J.J. went off for 29 but while they were both on the court it was 18-16.

    BFD December 15, 2010 at 9:37 pm #

    League rules stipulate that we can’t trade for Redick this year, and I wonder if people realize yet that we either have to either trade Brewer or BOTH of Asik and Kurt Thomas to get JR Smith right?

    dave December 15, 2010 at 10:20 pm #

    john hollinger has had it in for the bulls for a while. mentioned on blogabull is he how he lists all the eastern conference teams on win streaks while failing to mention the bulls. this rose not seeking contact theory out there is such bs–stacey was talking the other night about how rose’s body control hurts him because it disguises fouls. after his fall against the pacers fouls have become far more necessary, if only as a deterrent to keep him healthy. and boozer/noah need to start banging more if he gets more abuse. you have to protect your star player, legally or extralegally.

    Chuck December 15, 2010 at 10:44 pm #

    The falls in Indy demonstrate the fact that the Bulls need to send in somebody (Scalabrine and Kurt Thomas come to mind) in to send the Pacers best player into the 3rd row when they pull that kind of cheap shot. Maybe this is something that Taj can incorporate into his game, being the enforcer. Rodman was the best at this. You start taking cheap shots on our guys and your best guy is going to be in a crumpled mess very soon.

  10. Kelly December 16, 2010 at 3:30 am #

    I just could not agree more. Maybe we need to give Derrick some acting classes, I don’t know. But what really gets infuriating is when you get folks like Loren up there acting as though Bulls fans are complaining about some sort of conspiracy.

    It’s not that. At the same time, I watch the games, and routinely see Rose get fouled a minimum of three times a game and not get calls for it. It’s almost without fail. Then you get people who don’t watch the games argue with you that something they didn’t see (because they weren’t watching) didn’t happen when you SAW it happen (because you WERE watching.)

    I have to add that I find it especially ironic that they Loren also talks about no matter what team and/or player is being mentioned the Bulls fans have to turn it into a whine-fest about not getting enough credit.

    Gee, maybe a Bulls fan should start their own blog, and write their own thing about it. Then no one could complain about it right?

    Tristan December 16, 2010 at 3:41 am #

    I don’t think Rush had any intention of hurting Rose. It looked like he was trying to draw the charge, got there a half second late, and wasn’t expecting Rose to jump halfway over him.

    And I want JR Smith nowhere near this team. The Bulls’ offensive chemistry is great right now, we really don’t need a black hole coming in and completely stopping the flow of the offense.

    Loren December 16, 2010 at 4:34 am #

    Sorry, Matt, that doesn’t pass the smell test. You basically wrote that his weakness is that he has too much integrity and too admirable a personality. That’s perfectly transparent homerism however you try to spin it afterwards. I might as well write that [favored political party]’s weakness is that they’re too smart, and should really learn to dumb down their policies so that the average American can understand them.

    Also: “Derrick is too fast, strong and insanely athletic for his own good.” Great angle on why anyone might not bow down and worship him there. Oh, it must be because he’s way too good for all us ignorant haters to appreciate. And the other 500 times I’ve heard your thinly veiled condescending “you can’t talk unless you watched every game” argument weren’t any more convincing than the 501st.

    Honestly, I expect better from you. I’m bothering to post criticism because I’m disappointed. If anyone should be able to provide a smart perspective, I thought it would be you. Instead you sound like a Stacy King parrot. Or is it Mike McGraw? Stop letting me down.

    zillaa December 16, 2010 at 8:06 pm #

    Loren, maybe you haven’t noticed the title of the post…….”Derrick Rose and his first technical foul”.

    Obviously, you are biased. Yeah, I’m throwing that out there as an assumption, because you didn’t seem to notice the stat that Rose is 11th in the league in # of shots at the rim at 5.5 (D Wade averages 6.5), but 35th in FT attempts a game with 4.9 (D Wade averages 9.1). Tell me who is deified more by referees that influence games.

    Also, the political party reference is unnecessary, and since even Republicans know that they’re considered “the dumb party”, but the fact that you had to veil it with [favored political party] tells me that this is all I need to say. I’m right, you’re wrong. You may now falsely call me a libby democrat…….now.


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