OAKLAND, Calif. – So much for the highly-anticipated Derrick Rose-Stephen Curry showdown.
Then again, Rose’s toughest one-on-one battle these days seems to be with himself.
Dealing with a sprained left ankle suffered in the Monday win over Indiana, Rose said on Friday that his history of injuries, well, has him a bit spooked.
“I feel like my body is a little bit different,’’ Rose said. “If I’m not close to 100 percent I overthink a lot of things and overcompensate on a lot of things, but it comes along with just my body type.’’
Asked if his history with injuries was the reason that overthinking occurs, Rose replied, “Yeah, what has previously happened, and just dealing with the injury. Like if I was to go out there and play, I wouldn’t be playing the game I normally play. I think it would be half of what I can do on the court, and playing against [Golden State] that’s not what I want to do.’’
Although the ankle sprain was not deemed serious, and Rose said that there was no swelling, the Bulls will have three days off before playing in Portland. That seemingly gives the point guard more than enough time to be ready to return to the court.
That didn’t help his teammates out against Golden State, as the Warriors continued their historic run by making the Bulls victim No. 14, staying perfect on the year. Not without a fight, however, as Jimmy Butler scored 28 points, grabbed nine rebounds and had seven assists in the 106-94 loss at Oracle Arena.
“The frustrating thing about it is the last time I played I had a good game, and kind of build off of good games,’’ Rose said. “For me not to have that opportunity to play because of the ankle injury, that’s the only frustrating thing about it, but it’s reality, I have to deal with it, and I’ll be back soon.’’
The good news was there was more activity from Rose throughout the day leading up to the game with the defending NBA Champions. He was able to participate in the early stages of the morning shootaround and increase his lateral movement.
But one of Rose’s best attributes is also his greatest weakness at times, and that’s his pride. Rose doesn’t like to be shown up. All Curry has done this season is make the opposition look very small. Rose would have trouble slowing him down if he was 100 percent healthy, so the idea of taking him on with a bum wheel? No thanks.
“He’s amazing, man,’’ Rose said of Curry. “He’s playing great basketball. If anything he pushes, I think not only me, but the whole league to work on their game. The way he’s been working out, the way he’s focused and how consistent he’s been playing, I think he’s pushing the entire league.’’
Rose wasn’t the only no-show for the game with Golden State, as Aaron Brooks and his hamstring were also sidelined.
That meant Kirk Hinrich having a lot more responsibility, and having to face a player in Curry that just might be re-inventing the point guard position.
“It’s impossible to guard,’’ Hinrich said of Curry. “The way he’s playing right now is out of his mind. Nobody has found an answer for it yet. I think he’s definitely in a league of his own in that category. Just his skill set, the way he passes, shoots from anywhere, he has it all.
“The level he’s doing it at, since I’ve been in the league, I really haven’t seen that. You knew how he could shoot the ball [coming into the league]. But his all-around skill set seems like it’s gotten better every year and he’s just taking it to a whole other level. It’s just ridiculous what he’s doing. It’s amazing.’’