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Rose Contract Reax

23 Dec 2011

The reviews are in, and the only question the Chicago media has about Derrick Rose’s contract extension is why it couldn’t be a lifetime deal. A selection of the hosannas for the young Prince of Chicago:

Sam Smith:

Don’t mistake Rose for guys like LeBron, who called himself King. Guys who seek out and endorse nicknames are often about themselves. Why so many like Derrick is they can tell he’s not about affectations, but teamwork and sincerity. He is how you would like your favorites to be. It’s wonderful to have a sports star you don’t have to apologize for or wince about his actions and behavior.

Jon Greenberg:

It feels good to root for him and to write about him. … He really is the product that he’s selling. As the Bears fade into hibernation, it’s safe to say the Bulls are truly Chicago’s team, and the only one led by a true Chicagoan. We’re a city that recognizes the value of authenticity. Rose is the real deal, and he’s a good guy too. There is no shame in rooting for him and his story.

David Haugh:

Without even factoring in how the contract legitimizes the Bulls long-term championship hopes, the money invested in Rose will seem like a bargain by the time the deal runs out in 2017.

It’s like a personal-services contract with the city of Chicago. Think of how the image of Rose soaring in his No. 1 jersey symbolizes the sleek elegance of Chicago every bit as much as the skyline. From China to Chinatown, Rose represents the city in exemplary fashion every game he puts on a Bulls uniform on national TV, every commercial he shoots, every time he humbly opens his mouth to praise God, his teammates and coaches — but never himself.

Rose embraces the role of city ambassador with more modesty but less panache than Michael Jordan. With apologies to Brian Urlacher and Jonathan Toews, Rose has become the face of Chicago sports most easily recognized and universally respected. With respect to Dick Butkus, Rose one day could be remembered as the biggest homegrown sports star Chicago has produced.

Brian Windhorst, writing from a national angle, contrasts the commitment Rose and Kevin Durant have made to their teams with the shorter deals LeBron, Wade, Bosh, Amare, Carmelo and Dwight Howard signed a few years ago when their rookie deals expired:

The shorter contracts and options to terminate the contract early applied tremendous pressure to that group of stars’ various teams and provided the players with maximum leverage. This, of course, was the point. The stars wanted as much control as possible. …

But there was another consequence. Their teams struggled under the weight of the short leashes. It made some teams spend wildly on short-term moves because they were afraid to lose their star, which happened in Cleveland with James and now in Orlando with Howard. It didn’t work in either case.

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