Derrick Rose takes the floor for the Chicago Bulls for the first time since April 28, 2012, in five days. It’s been more than 17 months since we’ve seen him play. There’s an assumption that this long absence means that Rose will be fully healed and ready to play at the high level we’ve come to expect from him, and that may well be the case.
But what if he comes back and isn’t the same immediately?
Well, in a word: Relax. Pretty much every single player who has ever returned from an ACL tear has gone through an initial adjustment period. Just because he struggles at first doesn’t mean he’s ruined forever. He has 8 preseason games to get back in the swing of things, and then 82 games before the playoffs. The Bulls are good enough to make the playoffs even if Rose isn’t DERRICK ROSE.
Besides, by all accounts from training camp, Rose is doing just fine. Does that mean it will translate to real games? No, not necessarily, but it doesn’t mean it won’t either.
So, look, just try to stay calm.* Everything will work itself out.
29 days, folks.
*This also applies to any initial success. Many players coming back from ACL tears have success in their first game or two back, then struggle for a while before regaining their earlier form.