Derrick Rose is the unquestioned prince of Chicago basketball. No other player since Michael Jordan has won the Windy City’s heart the way Rose has in such a short period of time.
In just four seasons Rose has been named rookie of the year, won an MVP award, led the Bulls back to the Eastern Conference finals and landed a $95 million dollar contract. Not bad for a quiet kid who apparently hates attention.
In a recent interview with GQ magazine, Rose spoke on his reluctance to bask in the spotlight:
“I was the best kid in my neighborhood at a young age,” he says. “My whole life. I was always the one everyone was talking about. I’ve never really wanted the attention, but it has always been there.
“It seems like the better I play, the more attention I get. And I can’t get away from it. You play great, you get attention. But I hate attention. It is weird. I’m in a bind. The more you win, the more they come.”
It probably doesn’t help that Rose is born and raised in Chicago and starred in high school before a one-and-done campaign at Memphis. Playing for your hometown’s pro franchise can bring a lot of pressure (just ask LeBron about that). It also can’t be easy to avoid the attentionwhen the Bulls haven’t been this relevant since #23 sank the infamous jumper against Utah in ’98.
Rose’s temperament off the floor is a direct contrast to his play on the court, where Rose is one of the NBA’s most relentless offensive attackers. Rose has missed a lot of time this season due to injuries, but with the playoffs on the horizon Rose is returning to the lineup healthier and looking to lead the Bulls on another deep run in the postseason.
I wrote this article on why Derrick Rose is a breath of fresh air and role model type of athlete. In a time where most athletes are looking to become international brands and grow their image off the court, Rose just wants to win basketball games. And that’s what makes him a special player.
You can read more of GQ’s excellent article here.