The Night Derrick Rose Inspired the Entire State of Minnesota

Oct 31, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves guard Derrick Rose (25) celebrates during the fourth quarter against the Utah Jazz at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports ORG XMIT: USATSI-384755 ORIG FILE ID: 20181031_szo_ah7_0067.JPG

Oct 31, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves guard Derrick Rose (25) celebrates during the fourth quarter against the Utah Jazz at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports



This entire year has been a shit show for the Minnesota Timberwolves. Even the good news or anything positive to come from the basketball floor at Target Center came with an asterisk. “Jimmy Butler is leaving so what does it even matter?”

We’ve all waited for someone to take over the team (or even a game) and claim this team as their own. The fan base has turned to Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins to show a fire that would make us believe in a coherent life after Jimmy. But, signs of life have been non-existent…. Until last night.

Look, there are going to be 5,000 articles to read this morning on Rose’s performance from last night so I’m not going to fluff this piece up. I’ll let you get on with your day. Here is what stuck out to me about Derrick’s performance last night.

He cared. He cares.

This entire season has been filled with guys who don’t care. Whether it’s Jimmy not caring about anyone’s feelings but his own (and even seemingly not caring about blowing up an entire franchise and fan base). Or, KAT and Wiggins not caring enough on the floor or off. Rumors have floated that they might care more about late-night Fortnite than they do about being great.

It made for a depressing situation for fans. You want to stand with KAT and Wiggins but their demeanor on the court and clear unwillingness (or hopefully just unreadiness) to take over a game or the team has been frustrating as fuck.

But, all of that disappeared last night.

The shots were falling like they haven’t for Rose in a long time. He showed that he still has a lot of that quick-twitch that won him the MVP back in 2011. And, it’s always a bonus when Ricky Rubio comes to town and lays an egg while one of our point guards puts up a 50-burger.

But, what happened afterward is what caught me in the feels.

To go from a top-5 player in the NBA, to a guy who many thought was on his way out of the league, has to be difficult and clearly something that Derrick struggled to wrap his mind around. To be a shell of your old self in a game that you used to dominate has to be tough. Yet, he pushed through. He kept going. He kept working. Nothing was guaranteed. All of that work could have been for nothing. But, he didn’t stop. He kept rowing. He kept working.

To see all of that hard work and perseverance pay off was rewarding just to watch and a lesson to all those watching. Because, nothing in life is given and nothing is promised. All you can do is put in the work and make sure you capitalize on your opportunities when they arise. No excuses. No bullshit. Just work.

As a fan, it was just nice to see someone other than Jimmy Butler perform like Rose did. Not just the 50 points, but the way he did it and the emotion he played with. Watching a big performance like that is much more rewarding when you don’t have a devil on your shoulder reminding you how “said player” is in the process of ruining professional basketball in Minnesota.

Derrick Rose taught a lot of lessons on Wednesday night. Hopefully Jimmy, KAT, Wiggins, and the fans watching comprehended what they witnessed.

My heart was stolen last night.

Eric Strack
Minnesota Sports Fan @RealMNSportsFan