A tale of two torn ACL’s
Last year of the NBA playoffs Derrick Rose and Iman Shumpert went down with an ACL injury on the very same day. Since then NBA fans have chronicled and closely watched the rehab and return or lack thereof of each player. Both players are explosive, high volume guards who are important to their team, Rose obviously is a bigger piece to his team but both are still needed.
Shumpert returned to the Knicks lineup in January and started off slow as he regained confidence in his knee. Since then however he has returned to being one of the best defensive players on the team and an additional scorer to help Carmelo Anthony. Shumpert has been especially essential in the playoffs. As his popularity rises again, the light shone harder on Derrick Rose.
Rose chose not to return although the team’s doctor medically cleared him. His decision has been at the focal point of the Bulls postseason despite the team playing hard with the battered members left on the squad. Doctors cleared Rose to start scrimmaging with the team in mid-February and cleared him for full contact play in March. Still he hasn’t hit the court. As his teammates are dropping around him like flies, still he waits. Joakim Noah has been playing with one foot, grabbing rebounds and dominating the post. Nate Robinson is exerting all his energy on the court and vomiting during timeouts. Luol Deng is frustrated trying to get out of a hospital bed to join his teammates all while Rose watches from the sidelines. As the Bulls struggle with the Miami Heat and Iman Shumpert proved to be a vital asset to the Knicks, the criticism of Rose has increased. But then things took another turn.
Shumpert injured his left knee after falling twice in Game 3. In one fall, his legs gave out and his knee appeared to bend awkwardly. Shumpert didn’t participate in practice on Monday or Tuesday. With Shumpert reinjuring his knee people are beginning to question whether or not Derrick Rose was smarter for not returning. All of a sudden the tables have turned and the overzealous Knicks fans and Rose critics have to step back and reevaluate. The Knicks face the Pacers tonight and have to avoid going down 3-1 in the series, they’ll need Shumpert at 100%. Though he is cleared to play and will start tonight, hopefully his knee isn’t a hinderance.
The fact of the matter is no one knows if Shumpert would’ve been better sitting out or if the Bulls would win with Rose in. No two players heal alike and it’s unfair to compare them.
– Shaina Auxilly (@Shay_Marie)