Derrick Rose leaves Cavaliers to handle personal matter
CLEVELAND, OH - NOVEMBER 5: Derrick Rose #1 of the Cleveland Cavaliers drives to the basket against the Atlanta Hawks on November 5, 2017 at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by David Liam Kyle/NBAE via Getty Images)
By Tom Withers, Associated Press
CLEVELAND (AP) — Derrick Rose’s injuries may have pushed him to a breaking point.
The former league MVP, who has been trying to revive his career with the Cavaliers, left the team earlier this week to handle a personal matter. A team spokesman said Friday (Saturday, PHL time) that Rose has been excused since Wednesday (Thursday, PHL time) and there is no timetable for his return.
The team did not offer any other details about Rose’s absence.
ESPN reported that Rose is taking personal time “to evaluate his future in the NBA.” A team source told ESPN that Rose’s numerous injuries are “taking a toll on him mentally.”
Rose’s agent, B.J. Armstrong, did not immediately return messages from the AP seeking comment.
Rose has played in just seven of Cleveland’s 18 games this season because of a left ankle injury the point guard sustained while driving to the basket on Oct. 20 (Oct. 21, PHL time) in Milwaukee. He’s averaging 14.3 points per game in his first season with Cleveland.
Rose’s career has been slowed by knee injuries. He sat out the 2012-13 season in Chicago and played only 10 games the following year due to injury.
The 29-year-old had been excited about a new start with Cleveland after spending last season with the New York Knicks. He signed a one-year, $2.1 million free agent contract this summer with the Cavs and was expected to be the team’s backup point guard behind Isaiah Thomas.
However, Thomas is still recovering from a hip injury sustained last season with Boston, and Rose was thrust into a starting role.
Rose dropped some weight to pressure off his knee joints, and showed flashes of his former self before getting hurt. The ankle had been bothering him for nearly a month when Cavs coach Tyronn Lue announced last week that Rose would be sidelined for “at least” two more weeks.
Rose had been wearing a walking boot and undergoing treatment.
The Cavs have rebounded from a slow start and have won six straight games entering Friday’s (Saturday, PHL time) matchup with Charlotte.