By Paul Roumeliotis
One day away from the most anticipated return of Derrick Rose, the former MVP sat down with ESPN's Michael Wilbon to discuss his repaired ACL and his thoughts on the upcoming season.
Rose played in seven of the Bulls eight preseason games. He finished as the team's leading scorer, averaging 20.7 points per game, which also ranked third in the NBA behind Kevin Durant and Bradley Beal.
His approach to games is important because it's different, especially with some precautions.
"(I'm) really taking care of my body, changing my diet, and making sure I'm staying after practice to really getting the wrinkles out," Rose said.
Stretching wasn't in Rose's routine and he used to be opposed to it. But now, he does, and he'll do anything to avoid another injury.
"I was talented," he laughed. "You get a little bit older, it's just preparing yourself and preventing injuries so I'm just trying to prevent anything that's coming my way."
The Bulls open the regular season Tuesday night in Miami against the defending champs. The last time the Bulls were in Miami, the Heat ended their season in the second-round of the NBA Playoffs with a 94-91 Game 5 win. However, rumors started to hype up even more about Rose returning after the Bulls took Game 1 of the series.
If there was a time he was ready to go, it may have been the playoffs, but he still wasn't 100 percent.
"I think in the playoffs, yes," Rose said. "But, in the playoffs, that's when things pick up a little bit. Double teams, strategies, other games where they're going to double team and hold two people on me and make me pass the ball. Then, I question myself. Am I able to take on that double team? And the answer was no. At that time, I wasn't, so I couldn't rush it."
Despite the temptation, Rose didn't hesitate to say that he feels a lot better sitting out last season.
"I think that's the smartest decision I ever made ... " Rose continued. "... was to sit out, let my body heal, and come back a better player."