Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose is drawing praise from Team USA coaches for his performance in workouts after playing in only 10 games over the past two seasons because of two severe knee injuries.
Team USA assistant and Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim said Tuesday that Rose has been the "most impressive" player at Team USA's minicamp in Las Vegas, according to ESPN Chicago's Nick Friedell.
"That's my biggest surprise coming in here," Syracuse coach and Team USA assistant Jim Boeheim told ESPNChicago.com, in reference to Rose's performance. "The one thing I was worried about is whether he would be able to step in after so much time [off]. He looks, to me, as good as when we had him in the world championship in '10, when he was at full strength coming [into] an MVP year. He looks very, very good. Obviously, [when] he gets in some games, it will be a little different, but it's not like he hasn't had success in games. He had a lot of success.
"He's been the most impressive guy here."
Team USA head coach and Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski also praised Rose.
"He's gone after people," Krzyzewski said. "[Shying away from contact] ain't happening. He's going after everybody, and he's really going hard. His movement on defense has been spectacular. When we started practice [Monday], what he did defensively -- whoa. It picked everybody up. You don't play that type of defense in the NBA because you have to play 40 minutes and 100 games, but here if you play 20 minutes, that's a lot, but you don't have to play consecutively, so you can go to an extreme -- that's what he's doing. I think he's shown he has great balance and strength. He's stronger, and he has better balance, and he's shooting the ball great. I think he's been absolutely terrific these first two days."
Rose, 25, is trying to earn one of 12 spots on Team USA's roster for the FIBA Basketball World Cup, which begins in Spain on Aug. 30.
- Chris Johnson