To celebrate becoming an official member of Team USA, Derrick Rose helped lead his new team to an 87-59 exhibition win over Greece. Rose — who started at the point guard spot — finished with 13 points (6-for-7 from the field, 1-for-2 from downtown), 2 rebounds, 2 steals, 1 assist and zero turnovers in 19 minutes of action.
And did I mention he was named player of the game?
In addition to the ultra-efficient O, Rose has been playing hyper-aggressive D. As Doug Thonus of ChicagoNow wrote: “What impresses me most about Rose and his team USA experience is his improved defense. Coach K has challenged Rose to become a disruptive defender, and given Rose’s length and athleticism that’s the type of defender he can play in the NBA as well. Derrick is playing physical, attacking defense. He’s generating steals and looks in the open court.”
That has to make new Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau pretty excited.
Seriously, Rose’s “How To Become A Superstar” checklist includes: a) develop three-point shot, b) earn more free throws, and c) become a better defender. As far as we can tell, Rose has addressed a) and c) over the summer. And let’s not forget how impressive he’s been on a team of NBA stars. He closed out Spain and he was named Team USA’s best player against Greece.
Memo to all NBA teams regarding the 2010-11 season and beyond:
Beware Derrick Rose.