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For Rose, patience is the name of the game

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Oct 1

In a perfect world, Derrick Rose would join his teammates on the Berto Center court when the Bulls hold their first practice of the season on Tuesday.

After all, there were times when he certainly sounded—and looked—ready on Monday, when the Bulls held their annual media day. But the reality is that Rose has a ways to go as he rehabilitates a torn ACL suffered in last season’s playoffs.

“I wish I could be in training camp right now, but I can’t,” Rose said. “That’s why I say I’m working on my patience, knowing that I have to prove to them that I’m ready to come back.”

It’s a new experience for Rose, who said that the mental challenges have been more difficult than the physical ones to date. But he’s making progress and determined to come back as good, if not better.

Media Day“Every week I’m improving,” said Rose. “Just trying to stay patient, taking my time, and hopefully be back soon.”

In the meantime, the rehab has allowed Rose an opportunity to spend a significant amount of time in the weight room. It’s something he believes will pay big dividends upon his return.

“I’m going to be a better player, but who knows in what area,” said Rose. “My legs have never been this strong before, my upper body has never been this strong before, my core has never been this strong before. I’m just going to see how far this takes me.”

An upcoming milestone for Rose will be later this month, roughly two weeks from now, when he begins to start cutting on his repaired left knee.

“Cutting is the hardest thing in the world right now to do,” said Rose. “I’m scared of it. And right when I think I get that out of my system, I think I’ll be pretty close, where I have to prove to them that I’m ready to play. Hopefully it won’t take the whole year.”

As for when Rose will return, both he and the Bulls stayed away from any specific timeline. And as GM Gar Forman noted, though Rose continues to progress as the team had hoped, the team’s star still has a lot of work to do.

“He’s come a long way,” said Forman. “When we say on schedule, he is up to par as far as what the expectations were at this point in his rehab. But let’s not forget he’s still got a long way to go. He remains focused and committed to what he’s doing, and there haven’t been any setbacks, so that’s why we say he’s on schedule. As far as the future is concerned, we’re taking this process step by step. Up to this step, he’s right where we want him to be.”

While Rose is sidelined, he plans to very much be a part of the team.

“[I'm] staying with the team right now, being around the team,” Rose said. “Been doing most of my rehab up here every day, just showing them that I’m working hard and showing them that it’s paying off where I’m surprising some of them too, when I walk around, they’re surprised how well I’m walking and just trying to keep things going, staying positive. I’m stress free. I’m at peace with myself, my health is OK and no one should be worrying about me.”

Audio—Derrick Rose meets the media at the Berto Center (10.01.2012):

Audio—Luol Deng meets the media at the Berto Center (10.01.2012):

Audio—Gar Forman and Tom Thibodeau meet the media at the Berto Center (10.01.2012):

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