Sam Sharpe-USA TODAY Sports

USA Basketball...Derrick Rose: So I Can Be Like Mike?

Aug 22, 2014; New York, NY, USA; United States guard Derrick Rose (6) controls the ball in front of Puerto Rico guard David Huertas (12) during the second quarter of a game at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

I have to give Derrick Rose some credit. He is definitely serious about this comeback. He is trying to connect all aspects of the game of basketball to get ready for the 2014-15 season.

Derrick Rose had a lot to say in Las Vegas when the USA  tryouts opened up. Derrick Rose said that he was changing his game up. That remains to be seen. Derrick Rose said he wanted to an Icon. Umm sure, last I checked Michael Jordan was the last icon in a  Bulls uniform unless you actually believe the Foot Locker commercial with James Harden, Charles Barkley and Scottie Pippen in it.

But there is one thing Derrick Rose is doing that is showing me that even though he may not get to icon status, it won’t be for the lack of  trying. Plus he is using tricks from the G.O.A.T. to do it.

Derrick Rose is taking a page out of Michael Jordan’s book taking notes on his Team USA teammates for when they all meet in the NBA’s regular season. Most notably Kyrie Irving.

Check out what Joe Cowley from the Chicago Sun Times has to say…

Rose has been taking notes for when Irving is back in a rival uniform.

“Not only on him, but everybody,” Rose said. “I mean we’re competitors. We look at each other’s games to see what strengths are, weaknesses are, and of course you’re going to use them during the season.”

I  have to say that I am loving this guy’s mindset. The key word here is the “mind”. To hear Rose talk this way means he is willing to take that  next step in evolving his total game and is actually starting to learn how to play basketball efficiently. No longer is he going to depend on his physical gifts solely to get the job done. Now he is working on the mental aspect of his game to get the competitive edge over his opponents.

Hopefully for Bulls fans, Derrick Rose is watching his teammates tendencies. Let’s look at some things I would watch if I was in Rose’s shoes over in Spain.

1) How do these guys prepare for games.

That means everything. Down to  the schedules they keep, to what they eat in pregame meals, how they stretch. Everyone doesn’t do everything right, but everyone is a teacher. They can teach you good habits to orchestrate in your routine. Plus they can show you bad habits that should be avoided and taken advantage of at a later date.

2) Go to moves belonging to Kyrie Irving.

All NBA players should be working on their games in  the summer and adding something new. Something tells me Kyrie Irving didn’t. Here’s the opportunity for Rose to hone in on Irving’s go to move then catch tendencies on the second. That way, when the playoffs come around, Irving will be very well taken care of in the last five minutes of game seven of a playoff series. You dig?

3) In your down time, play any shooting game known to man with Stephen Curry.

Look, Curry will beat the pants off of Derrick Rose from the perimeter. Who cares? If Rose shoots with Curry for a period of time whether it be at the free throw line or around the three-point line, he can’t help but improve his jumper. That way Rose doesn’t have to go to the basket with reckless abandon. Plus if he can get a jumper that has to be respected, his drive is illegal.

Rose realizes that after two major knee surgeries that wrecked the last two seasons, he needs to change his approach. Things are going to be different in 2014-15 than it was back in 2011 when he won the MVP. His body is not the same and more importantly for him and franchise the TEAM is not the same. He does have to do the amazing individual things he did to win MVP.

Reminds me of some dude that played for the Chicago Bulls that ran the 90’s that was playing for the Dream Team, Michael Jordan.

I took time to watch the Dream Team documentary to see if there could be any similarities between this squad and the “Originals”.

There very well could be…the motives of the Chicago Bulls star players past and present.

Check out what Mr. Jordan said concerning his motives of joining the Dream Team…

“Representing my country was a big thing, but I think the biggest motivation for me was now I get to spend time with some of the guys I compete against all the time.”

Now with the historical competitiveness of Michael Jordan, we all know what this means. He was going to watch and see what every player did to get a competitive advantage against each and every player. His number one rival on the team during those days?

Magic Johnson.

Back in those days, Magic Johnson was the standard of excellence. Coming out of the 1980’s Johnson had five world titles in eight NBA Finals appearances. So the words that were floating around the campfire was Jordan was good but he was no Magic Johnson.

Check out what Jordan had  to say about that.

“In my competitive nature, I wanted to use every little bit I could gather to gain an advantage.”

So these two had an underlying competition going for a while leading up to the Olympics over who was the best. Who was going to have the bragging rights by the end of the Olympics.

Of course Michael Jordan won the challenge between the two when they got to Monte Carlo, but both players pushed each other and it benefitted the team as a whole.

This is what Derrick Rose needs to do. Use this FIBA World Cup like Michael Jordan did in the Olympics back in 1992. It worked for Jordan. The Bulls went on to win their third straight title.

Maybe this is the blueprint for Derrick Rose to do the same.

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Tags: Chicago Bulls Derrick Rose Earvin Magic Johnson FIBA World Cup Michael Jordan Stephen Curry USA Basketball

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