“(Poor shooting) didn’t affect our game tonight. Defensively, it was a lack of effort tonight; it was embarrassing,” said guard Langston Galloway, who had 13 points. “We have to step it up and take it to another level. We have to be better. “We have to come out with better effort and better starts in the first quarter and third quarter. We have to find our way out of this; we’re in a deep hole.”
Stephen Jackson was rolling a blunt as he tried to gather his thoughts on the “Malice at the Palace.” Tuesday marked the 15th anniversary of the most infamous brawl in NBA history, which took place Nov. 19, 2004, during a game between the Indiana Pacers and Detroit Pistons. It resulted in nine players getting suspended for 146 games. Jackson was suspended 30 games and lost $1.7 million in salary for the incident, which included him and Ron Artest taking the fight into the crowd after Artest was hit by a drink thrown by a fan. “I don’t really think about the brawl until this time of year when it’s all over social media,” he said as he sealed and lit his blunt outside of a recording studio in Santa Monica. “I don’t regret it. I was there for my teammate and it was something I took pride in doing. I just hate the way I got judged. I’m far from a thug. I’m a loyal friend who will always have your back.”
Or even if he could see a return one day to the Bulls, who he led to the 2011 Eastern Conference finals. “I mean, like I always say, you probably have to ask (Chairman) Jerry (Reinsdorf) about that,” Rose said. “I have one more year on this deal. I’m here for two years. After next year, I’ll be a free agent. Who knows? That’s how I’m going to leave that.”
Storyline: Derrick Rose Free Agency
Now 31 and over eight years removed from becoming the youngest most valuable player in NBA history with the Bulls, Rose agreed with Perdue’s assessment that this may be the best he has felt mentally, physically and emotionally. “I believe so,” Rose said. “I’ve been through a lot. I was a kid when I first started off here. I was shy to the media. I didn’t want to talk to the media at all. It was a learning process. And I didn’t have a mentor at the time. (Agent) B.J. (Armstrong) could do all that he could do. But he never had the talent that I had or the spotlight that I had. He kind of let me just learn by actually just thrusting me in there and letting me figure it out myself.”
When Rose scored 50 points last season with the Timberwolves, the outpouring of praise from around the league felt universal. Rose’s ability to persevere and endure his physical travails to still impact games has resonated. “Me and BJ talk about this a lot and I think it’s the struggle,” Rose said. “Everybody struggles in life. A lot of people pretend and act like they don’t. And you wear a mask the majority of the day or a lot of people wear the majority of their life and try to hide the dark side or the down days. My down days were on TV. It was publicized. So I wasn’t able to hide like that. “I think that’s one of the reasons why I have a calm temper. Leading up to all (these) dramatics and me leaving and everything, the whirlwind I was in, the eye of the storm, I always stayed calm. I think that’s just part of who I am, my character.”
Rose: “It was just a different time in the sports world, period. Now we have the term “load management.” I don’t think that I would’ve taken it as far as Kawhi, as far as like they’re really being cautious about his injury or whatever he has. But if load management would’ve been around, who knows? I probably would’ve still been a Chicago Bull by now. But it wasn’t around.”
Storyline: Load Management