NBA AM: Derrick Rose, Bulls Agree To New Deal
According to the Chicago Tribune, reigning league MVP Derrick Rose has agreed to a five-year, $94.8 million contract extension with the Chicago Bulls.
The official announcement is expected to take place on Wednesday during a news conference at the Berto Center.
“It’s something big, but I think I want to talk more about it (Wednesday), with my family and everybody being there,” Rose said after the Bulls’ preseason victory over the Indiana Pacers on Tuesday. “But it’s definitely something big.”
The extension would begin in the 2012-13 season when Rose would be eligible to make roughly $16 million under the terms of the new Collective Bargaining Agreement.
Last season Rose averaged 25 points and 7.7 assists leading the Bulls to the league’s best record and back to the Eastern Conference Finals for the first time since 1998.
The Bulls enter the 2012 season with legitimate title aspirations behind the leadership of Rose.
The guard, entering his fourth season, has quickly earned the respect of league veteran Richard Hamilton who was recently signed by Chicago in free agency.
“He works hard,” Hamilton said. “He’s young. He’s 23 years old and the way he plays on the floor is the way he practices. In order to be great in this league, you just can’t turn it on (during) games. He really has a great work ethic.”
Surrounding Rose, the No. 1 pick of the 2008 draft, with talent has been Chicago’s biggest priority.
“Derrick is the centerpiece of what we’re putting together here,” Bulls general manager Gar Forman said earlier in training camp. “We want Derrick to be a Bull for a long, long time. It’s very important that we put the right pieces around Derrick.”
During the summer of 2010 the Bulls were an active player in free agency trying to lure big name veteran talent such as Dwyane Wade and Joe Johnson to the Windy City to pair alongside Rose.
Ultimately the club was able to land former All-Star forward Carlos Boozer, who like Hamilton, is impressed with Rose’s potential and believes the reigning MVP deserves all the accolades being thrown his way.
“We’re all very excited for him,” Boozer said. “He deserves it. He puts in a lot of effort. I wish the contract was for 10 years.”
Despite earning one of the most lucrative contracts in professional sports, Rose says the focus is all about family, treating people right and winning on the court.
“If I keep working hard and treating people the right way, good things will happen to me,” Rose said. “I live a humble life. I know I’ll be able to afford what I want. But not too many things excite me except winning and being around my family.”
Kirk Hinrich Eyeing Long Term Future In Atlanta: Veteran point guard Kirk Hinrich is in the last year of current contract, but is already thinking about his future after the season.
Hinrich, a former University of Kansas standout, says he would be interested in re-signing with Atlanta next summer as things stand right now.
“Yeah it’s definitely a possibility,” Hinrich said to HOOPSWORLD on his desire to remain a Hawk past this season. “I think a lot of [my return] depends on how we do this year as far as the management and stuff like that. But we plan on having a good year and trying to get over the hump. If we do that I think it’s a good likelihood the team will be back next year.”
The Hawks acquired Hinrich at last season’s trade deadline sending Jordan Crawford, Mike Bibby, Maurice Evans and a first-round pick to Washington.
Toward the end of last season Hinrich struggled tremendously with his shot while getting fully acclimated with his new teammates, but rebounded strongly in the first round of the postseason playing a pivotal role in the team’s upset victory over the Orlando Magic.
Hinrich readily admits that being in Atlanta for a full training camp has made him feel much more comfortable about his role and the veteran is also ready for a little revenge against his former club the Chicago Bulls who defeated the Hawks in the second round of the playoffs.
“I feel more comfortable definitely this year being able to come down here and see training camp and be a part of it,” Hinrich said. “We feel like after last year we have a bitter taste in our mouth. If we played better things would’ve been different. We lost to a good team but we’re trying to take the next step. We have so many athletes and versatile guys that can play different positions we’re excited. But the city is good and it’s great to especially be down here, [plus] it’s starting to get cold in Chicago.”
One potential roadblock to Hinrich’s initial desire to remain a Hawk is the emergence of third year guard Jeff Teague.
Teague earned plenty of respect in the second round of last season’s playoffs against the Bulls after Hinrich went down to injury and couldn’t play in the series. Teague will enter this season as the Hawks’ starting point guard.
With Atlanta already committed to $62 million in salaries for the 2013 campaign and its history of avoiding the luxury tax, Hinrich may be in his final season wearing a Hawks uniform – especially since the franchise will have to eventually extend Teague, provided he continues to develop.
But in Teague, Hinrich has a staunch supporter of his talent.
Despite playing the same position and seemingly being entangled in a battle for minutes Teague loves Hinrich’s diverse game and the mentorship he’s received from the veteran since he arrived to Atlanta.
“The benefit with Kirk is that he can actually play off the ball,” Teague told HOOPSWORLD. “He played with Derrick Rose and when Derrick Rose came in he played off the ball. That’s what makes him so valuable. He can guard two guards and he can guard point guards. He talks to me. He talks to me as a point guard. He’s like ‘you know I can slide to the two’ and things like that. [Competition] has never been a big deal with me and Kirk. I never tried to make it a competition; I mean we’re both competitors but I just want to win. I can care less how we win. If we make it to the Eastern Conference Finals and win a championship and I don’t get two minutes I’d be fine.”
Hinrich is possibly out until February after undergoing shoulder surgery.
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