Cleveland Cavaliers guard Derrick Rose is still away from the team as he evaluates his playing future, but the former MVP is in contact with the franchise's front office -- according to a report by ESPN.
Rose left the Cavs this week and is reportedly contemplating retirement, as the constant injuries he's dealt with over the last five years have taken a toll on him mentally.
The 29-year-old is currently dealing with a sprained left ankle which has forced him to miss 12 of the Cavs' 19 games this season.
Rose has had four knee surgeries, one eye operation and dealt with a multitude of other lower body ailments in his career.
"Rose is staying in communication with the franchise's front office during his self-imposed exile, but his future status with the team remains unclear, league sources told ESPN. Rose's increasing frustration with injuries is causing him to question his desire to continue playing, league sources said. The mental toll from a series of significant injuries that have diminished the production of the youngest NBA Most Valuable Player in history have played a part in the personal soul-searching on Rose's future, league sources said."
Rose is averaging 14.3 points and 1.7 assists this season while shooting 45.1 percent from the field and 29.7 percent from three. His best game of the year was against the Washington Wizards, when he scored 20 points on 50 percent shooting in a Cavs win.
Rose's teammates say they can't understand what Rose is going through, but have his back 100 percent and want him to be happy at the end of it all.
"We want, whatever he decides to do, we want the best for him," LeBron James said. "At the end of the day, you can't substitute nothing for happiness. And obviously, we know the injuries that he's been going through his whole career. We hope this ain't the end, but if it is, I was happy I got an opportunity to spend a couple months with him and watch him be the great point guard that he once was. But at the end of the day, a clearer head, there's no substitute for that. We want the best for Derrick. No matter if he comes back, no matter if he doesn't, we want him as an individual, as a man, as a father to be just happy with whatever decision he makes."
Said Dwyane Wade, "Whatever decision he decides to make, it's going to be the best decision for D-Rose, and at the end of the day, that's all that matters. We want Derrick to be happy. We're here for him. We want him to know that."
Rose's mental health is no laughing matter. The Chicago native has heard nothing but negativity and been in constant pain since 2012, and he's an introvert; so Rose tends to bottle things up instead of telling people how he feels.
Suppressing emotions puts a lot of stress on your body and can lead to a bevy of health risks such as high-blood pressure, stiff joints, bone weakness and becoming numb to positive sentiments.
The Cavs are fully supporting Rose during this tough time and will not fine him since his absence is excused.