2011 NBA Most Valuable Player and Chicago native Derrick Rose has been traded to the New York Knicks, along with Justin Holiday and a 2017 2nd-round draft pick, in exchange for Robin Lopez, Jerian Grant and Jose Calderon.
First reported by the Chicago Tribune’s K.C. Johnson, the trade culminates the sad downward spiral Bulls fans have watched their hometown hero take.
Drafted 1st overall in 2008, Rose was a phenomenon his first four years in the league
Multiple injuries later, the first being a torn ACL suffered in Game 1 of the 2012 playoffs, Rose finds himself packing, ready to try and resuscitate his career alongside nine-time All-Star Carmelo Anthony and sophomore sensation Kristaps Porzingis.
In what’s been, for once, an above average off-season for the Knicks thus far, look for New York’s aggressive pursuit of the Bulls’ Joakim Noah and Pau Gasol, maybe even Dwight Howard, to replace the loss of Lopez.
With Chicago’s Noah and Gasol already rumored to have been searching for new homes this free-agency period, the dealing of Rose only goes to further solidify those notions. The Bulls, on the other hand, are headed in somewhat of a foggy direction.
Grant, a Notre Dame alum drafted in 2015 by the Knicks, has a bright future ahead of him. However, he doesn’t exactly fit right into the Bulls’ plans.
Fred Hoiberg had a rocky rookie year as head coach for the storied franchise, while the retention of two-way super-star Jimmy Butler makes it hard to imagine the Bulls are headed into any iteration of a rebuilding mode.
If anything, this only fuels the speculation Chicago will try to clean house and flip Butler for enticing forward-looking assets.
One thing’s for certain; Madison Square Garden will most definitely have a new feel to it next season.
Chances are Spike Lee can’t wait.