Derrick Rose officially squashed any thought of him and star wingman Jimmy Butler having any kind of issues right before the start of the new season. But, how did he do it?
When the Chicago Bulls were humiliated in Game 6 of their second-round postseason match-up with the Cleveland Cavaliers, more than just Tom Thibodeau’s job status that was discussed.
After the Bulls lost 94-73 in Game 6 against Cleveland, rumors began of a “rift” between Derrick Rose and Jimmy Butler during the game. It didn’t take long for the rumors to take off in the local and national media; all while Butler was set to become a (restricted) free agent.
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But, all has settled fairly nicely for the Bulls. Thibodeau was replaced with former Bulls guard Fred Hoiberg as head coach, Butler received a new deal worth northward of $90 million, and the league’s most improved player spent all summer squashing any rumors of tension between he and Rose.
Now, with just mere hours before the NBA regular season tips off, Derrick Rose took to permanently squashing those rumors with a gesture towards Butler.
Chicago Tribune reporter K.C. Johnson — a long-time scribe on the Bulls beat — wrote on Rose’s confidence and determination to return to the upper echelon of the NBA’s best players. But, one part of the feature stuck out more than others.
"In early September, as the Bulls started trickling in before training camp for informal workouts, Derrick Rose casually and quietly presented Jimmy Butler with a gift.Rose wanted to honor and recognize Butler’s breakout season. He felt pride watching Butler earn his first All-Star appearance and win the NBA’s most improved player award.So Rose gave his backcourt mate a designer watch with a price tag college-tuition-paying parents would recognize."
So basically, Derrick Rose bought Jimmy Butler a watch that probably has a higher price than your current home for his outstanding season. That’s quite generous.
As for the rumors, Rose had a few thoughts during his interview with the Tribune.
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“That’s so far from the truth. We don’t even talk about it,” Rose said. “It’s people just nitpicking our team, trying to start something. I look at Jimmy like a little brother. I wish him nothing but the best. I encourage him every time he’s in the game and want him to have that confidence like he has.”
Rose doesn’t always say the “right” things. He’s put himself in a number of awkward situations with the media because of past comments. But, his comments on Butler and whole rumored beef itself should settle it. That’s it. It’s not an issue. According to both Rose and Butler, it’s never been an issue.
Chicago’s one of the largest media markets in the world. There’s always something to talk about, especially when it comes to a former league MVP and his star backcourt mate. As for this situation, it’s officially time to drop it. There’s nothing to see or talk about here any longer and it comes at a perfect time for the Bulls.
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