• Chandel Smith

Derrick Rose Fitting in New York

There is something special about a guard that can penetrate. Having the ability to drive to the rim and comfortably twist and contort your body to make a basket, or attract the defense and dish to an open man for an assist. There is beauty in that unteachable ability, especially for those that love the game of basketball.

You might think of Kyrie Irving, a younger Tony Parker, Russell Westbrook or Damian Lillard, but I'm not thinking of any of those players. I'm thinking Derrick Rose, the former MVP, that special type of point guard. No, he is not the Derrick Rose of old, but that does not mean he is the Derrick Rose of bad. Rose has never played with another player like Carmelo Anthony, a multi-time all-star, and offensive juggernaut who doesn’t need plays ran for him, this is not something Rose is used to. Ball dominant, dribble-drive, pick and roll, surrounded by defenders and a role playing shooter is what he had in Chicago. Now with the Knicks he has had to scale back his style, not only due to multiple infamous knee injuries, but because he does not have to bear the weight of the offense on his back. New York is happy to have a new version of Rose. We will take at least 18 points a game. Don’t expect him to have explosive dunks, as if he was shot out of a cannon. Do expect him to show a different side of himself. Somewhat safer in his approach, he can still get by his defenders and to the rim, but now lay the ball up to score. New Yorkers are all okay with this. New Yorkers just want Derrick to play. Play healthy.

Knicks fans have seen Carmelo play with multiple rosters. Flash in the pan players. Over the hill stars. D-Leaguers and player who look like they don’t know what good basketball looks like. With the addition of Rose, along with Kristaps Porzingis, the Knicks are in great shape to make some noise. It will take an effort of both veteran all-stars to learn how to play together efficiently and how to play to win, without hindering the growth of their Latvian teammate.

Judging from Derrick’s self invitation to the celebrate Thanksgiving at the Anthony’s they are doing what they can to gel as quickly as possible. There is great hope as to what these Knicks can become with Rose at the point. Whether he knows it or not, Knicks fans are rooting for him, some holding their breath, some praying for his health, but they are rooting. He has shown the ability to beat his opponent and get to the rim anytime he wants. He can draw fouls and command attention. In a losing effort to the Thunder, he gave Westbrook 30 points. The flashes are there and New York will gladly take them, but, in regards to Derrick, the fans and the NBA need to give up on those flashes and let him be a good basketball player. And, even if he is in New York for just one season, he may be the best point guard that the Knicks have had in 10 years

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