NEW YORK -- Derrick Rose wants to prove all of his doubters wrong, but he's trying not to let all the doubts about his game get into his head. As Rose gets set to open a new season against the New York Knicks on Wednesday night (ESPN, 8 ET), the former MVP sounds excited about being back on the floor after playing in just 10 games over the past two seasons because of two serious knee injuries.
"I can't get caught up in that," he said of the doubters. "I let my game speak for itself. By the way that I play you should be able to tell that I'm in the gym almost every day working on my craft. I don't like to say too much about my haters but you should be able to tell by the way that I work that I've been in the gym really going hard."
Teammates and coaches have consistently praised Rose for the work ethic he's put in over the past few months in order to get ready for the season. While he still wants to use his speed and quickness to overwhelm opponents, the 26-year-old is also trying to be more of a distributor during this return.
"Someone like Larry Bird, he just had a great feel for the game," Rose said. "His teammates, they loved playing with him. He made sure he got everybody the ball, but in the fourth quarter they knew that that was his fourth quarter. So [we're] just trying to get the same atmosphere here where [we] go through the game, go through the first couple of quarters getting everybody touches, then in the fourth quarter it's my time."
There was a point during free agency when many in the Bulls' organization thought Knicks star Carmelo Anthony would ultimately land in Chicago, but that didn't come to fruition after Anthony decided to take the extra guaranteed money and re-sign with the Knicks. Rose isn't worried about the Bulls' flirtation with Anthony as the pair prepares to face off.
"That's over with," Rose said. "I wouldn't say it's weird at all. He made his decision and like I said at the time, who wouldn't want to play with a talent like that? He came back [to New York], you can't get mad at him. But the people that we have on our team is who we got and that's who we have to roll with."