|Derrick Rose's brother had some strong words for the Bulls. (Getty Images)|
Derrick Rose's brother, who is also his manager, laid into the Chicago Bulls.
Speaking with ESPN Chicago, Reggie Rose indicated the Bulls' inactivity in improving their roster is a factor in Rose's slow return to the floor.
"What have you pieced together? Have you made any moves? Have you made any trades to get better? You know all roads to the championship lead through Miami," Reggie Rose told ESPNChicago.com. "What pieces have you put together for the physical playoffs?
"Joakim Noah is a great player. Luol Deng is a great player. But you need more than that. You have to put together pieces to your main piece. The players can only do so much. It's up to the organization to make them better."
Relevant: The Bulls didn't make any deals on Thursday's trade deadline. Though there's actually a good reason for it -- the Bulls are sitting over the NBA's very punitive luxury tax line.
Rose has been recovering from a massive knee injury he suffered last postseason. He was potentially slated to return to the lineup sometime after the All-Star break, but recently said he "wouldn't mind" missing the rest of the season. And his brother seems to think it's because Rose wouldn't be returning to a championship-level team.
"Everyone is expecting Derrick to come back," Reggie Rose said. "If Derrick comes back, they're going to sell more tickets. Is the reason for Derrick to come back to win a championship or make money? Right now, I don't believe a championship. Everything in the NBA is financial."
Rose's return certainly is in doubt, but the Bulls do sit 31-22 and fifth in the East. The addition of a healthy Rose to a scrappy, tough-minded defensive team could potentially put them back in the title discussion. Keep in mind: This was a Bulls team, led by Rose, that was in the Eastern Conference finals two seasons ago. And with Rose in the lineup, had the No. 1 seed in the playoffs last season.
Rose released a statement late Thursday in response to the firestorm his brother's comments created:
“I have always felt that the Bulls organization's goals have been the same as mine and that is to bring another championship to this city.”
Recently, Rose returned to 5-on-5 practice with the team, seeming to put him closer to rejoining his team on the floor. With 29 games left for the Bulls, there's still enough time for him to get acclimated and back in game shape to be ready for a strong playoff push.
One thing's for sure: Reggie's comments are certainly strangely timed and oddly public. The points he's making truly have some serious merit, but what good does it do for the Bulls? Insinuating at all that Rose would consider sitting out in protest only will have negative results.