Derrick Rose, reunited with Tom Thibodeau, gets shot with Timberwolves to revive career

Jerry Zgoda, Star Tribune (Minneapolis) on

Published in Basketball

With Butler out injured these coming weeks and Shabazz Muhammad waived at his request last week, Rose gives the Wolves another scorer off the bench, a veteran who has participated in 41 playoff games and most importantly, a player whom Thibodeau trusts.

"We just thought he could help the team," Thibodeau said. "That's what our expectations are: Come in, be a good teammate and try to help us win."

Asked how Rose can help, Thibodeau said, "Just his experience. He has been around, been in a lot of games. He's familiar with what we're doing. He has played with some of the guys that we have. So that's a plus."

Rose deferred the decision to Thibodeau when asked if he'll play Thursday night against Boston at Target Center. But Thibodeau and assistant coach Andy Greer prepared a package for Rose to study in time for the 7 p.m. tip.

"Yeah, yeah, yeah," Rose said when asked if Thursday's shootaround felt like one with the Bulls once upon a time. "I forgot about some plays."

Thibodeau coached the Bulls to 62 regular-season victories and Rose to that MVP season in his first season as an NBA head coach. He considered signing Rose to play for the Wolves last summer before Thibodeau chose Teague.

"He has been through a lot," Thibodeau said. "Injuries derailed him. He averaged 18 points a game last year. He had some good games this year. I know what he can do."

Thibodeau was asked if he felt the need to do his due diligence on Rose's civil trial.

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"I know who Derrick is," Thibodeau said. "I know who he is. I spent a lot of time with him."

Rose deemed his relationship with Thibodeau one that works because of its mutual respect.

"He's real, he's truthful and that's what I can respect," Rose said. "In this business, sometimes you get shaky with that. As a man, I respect him because he's truthful."

Asked if Thibodeau is the best coach to get the best out of him, Rose said, "Who knows? Who knows? So far he has been the best coach. I still think I got a lot left. Who knows if he can still spark something up. ... I don't have to prove anything. I'm going to let my hard work do that."

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