Updated 06:29 PM EST, Tue, Nov 24, 2020

Derrick Rose Return: Comeback in Playoffs Possible? Bulls Star Targets Stint With Team USA

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Chicago Bulls superstar Derrick Rose is hoping to return to the court in the coming months, and a stint with Team USA competing in the upcoming FIBA World Championship this summer is very much a possibility.

Rose, who continues his rehabilitation after tearing his MCL in his knee 10 games after returning from an ACL injury, did not rule out the opportunity to join Kevin Durant, Kevin Love and other budding stars with Team USA this offseason.

The Bulls star was an integral part of Team USA squad that reclaimed the FIBA World championship after going undefeated in the tournament staged in Turkey in 2010. Durant was named the MVP of the tournament, but Rose used his strong performance in the Turkey game as launching pad for him to become the youngest ever MVP in the history of the NBA.

Possible Return in the Playoffs?

Chicago Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau was optimistic about Rose's rehabilitation, but dismissed the possibility he's going to make a return in the postseason.

"He's moving along fine," head coach Tom Thibodeau said via the International Business Times. "He has picked it up a little bit. But there's still no contact. He's out for the year, but he's doing well."

Rose, who tore his MCL in a game against the Portland Trail Blazers on Nov. 22, previously said he didn't rule out returning in the postseason if his recovery speeds up. Then again, Thibodeau and general manager Gary Forman decided to take him off the court for the entire season as a precautionary measure.

Stint With Team USA

Forman said he won't interfere with Rose's decision to play in the upcoming FIBA World Cup of Basketball—if he sees his point guard in full health. The Bulls GM feels excited to have his best player get back in action on the grandest stage in international basketball scene.

"Our thinking is that it would be a terrific opportunity for him," Forman said in a text message to Nick Friedell of ESPN Chicago. "And we would be supportive of him playing."

As for Team USA head coach Mike Krzyzewski, the Duke bench tactician said he would welcome Rose with open arms, as he believes the Bulls star is a nice addition to the team on and off the court.

"Well, I'm hoping 100 percent," Krzyzewski said. "We're all hoping that he'll be part of the group that comes in there. And then just because we haven't seen him play to see how he's doing. We'd never try to put him in harm's way for his career. But if he's ready, we'd welcome Derrick. Derrick's one of the great guys, in addition to being an outstanding player. He's a great team guy. And that's why we want him part of USA Basketball."

Rose was averaging 15.9 points, 4.3 assists and 3.2 rebounds per game before suffering another season-ending injury.

"Our thinking is that it would be a terrific opportunity for him," Forman said in a text message to Friedell of ESPN Chicago. "And we would be supportive of him playing."

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