Derrick Rose and Adidas are publishing a six-part video series on YouTube called #thereturn. In essence, it’s the story of Rose’s rehab…his mental and physical battle to return from the ACL tear that ended his season and the Bulls’ hopes of contending for a title. And not simply to return. To return better and stronger than ever.
Episode 1 — titled “Belief” — has been released:
What makes this video fascinating is the narration by Rose.
As anybody who follows D-Rose already knows, the kid is humble to a fault and tends to shy away from the public eye. He doesn’t talk trash, rarely says boo to official, and refuses to dance at the All-Star Game. Zach Christman of NBC Chicago once described Rose as “boring as hell” and said “listening to the man talk is like taking Ambien.”
Now he’s talking. Oh boy is he talking.
Rose recently revealed that finding out about his torn ACL was “the closest thing to death” he’s ever experienced. In “Belief,” he describes his post-injury angst thusly: “think of your most downest day and times it by 100…that ain’t enough to describe how I felt at that time.”
I have to admit that statement made me fidget a little. The world can be a pretty dark place. Every day, someone finds out they have terminal cancer or loses a loved one. Both of those situations could be considered 100 times worse than a torn ACL, not vice versa.
But Rose’s somewhat skewed perspective aside, what’s telling here is that Rose was obviously moved by this injury in a way that nothing else has ever moved him. For perhaps the first time ever, he had to face down his own mortality. That’s never an easy thing to do. It makes me wonder how the injury will affect his outlook going forward. Will Rose now hear that ticking clock in the back of his brain? Every professional athlete is on borrowed time. It’s a painful lesson that Rose has learned younger than most.
The big upside of this video is it reinforces what Rose said in an earlier interview, that he is working on core strength and flexibility in ways that he never did before, and Dr. Brian Cole states that his belief is that Rose can not only regain his athleticism but potentially get to “125%” of where he was.
Can you imagine?