Rose says lockout unnecessary

Associated Press
Chicago Bulls’ Derrick Rose talks as he participates with dozens of elementary school students from his alma mater, Randolph Elementary School, at the unveiling of the newly-restored basketball court at Murray Park Playground, where Rose honed his hoops skills growing up on the South Side, Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2011, in Chicago. The improvements which include new basketball hoops and poles, fresh resurfacing and repainting of the court, new paint and new park signage were made possible by donations by Powerade, Wilson Sporting Goods, the Wasserman Foundation, The Chicago Park District and The Parkways Foundation. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)
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CHICAGO (AP) — The way Derrick Rose sees it, the NBA lockout is unnecessary and he will consider playing overseas if it drags on.

For now, the Chicago Bulls' star hopes the season can be salvaged, but he also made this clear.

"There's no reason why billionaires and millionaires should be arguing about money," he said. "There are other things in this world that we should be arguing about, but money shouldn't be the problem."

While negotiators for the league and players met Tuesday in New York hoping to move closer to an agreement, the league's reigning MVP was unveiling restored courts at his boyhood playground on Chicago's South Side.

Training camps have already been postponed with a week of preseason games canceled, and if the lockout extends deep into the season, he says he might join other players looking to head overseas.

Denver Nuggets free agents Wilson Chandler and J.R. Smith plan to play in China. Their teammate Ty Lawson will play in Lithuania and New Jersey Nets All-Star Deron Williams signed with Turkey's Besiktas.

Kobe Bryant is considering going overseas. Former No. 1 pick John Wall isn't ruling it out, and Rose isn't, either.

"Yes, I am taking it into consideration that I might go overseas, but I don't know where," he said. "There are a lot of great places overseas, but I haven't really had time to get the real details in place."

Agent B.J. Armstrong, the former Bull, said the players he represents are taking a wait-and-see approach and "remaining patient, working with the union and we'll see what happens."

Armstrong also said he hasn't heard from USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo, who said in July that he would start contacting 2012 Olympic team candidates "soon, within the next month" to gauge their interest. Rose played on the 2010 world championship team and would be a strong candidate for the London Games, particularly given the way he played last season.

Rose showed up to training camp wondering why he couldn't be MVP and became the youngest in league history while taking his place along a certain guy with a statue outside the United Center. The only other Bulls player to win the award is Michael Jordan.

Rose enjoyed one of the best all-around seasons by a point guard, averaging 25 points and 7.7 assists, while leading the Bulls to a league-high 62 wins and the Eastern Conference finals. It was easily Chicago's best run since Jordan and Scottie Pippen led three championship three-peats in the 1990s, and it came after failing to land some combination of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in free agency. Instead, they united in Miami and knocked off the Bulls in the playoffs.

For Rose, the jump to MVP in his third season continued a steady climb from Rookie of the Year to All-Star in his first two. But now, he's in a holding pattern.

"I do miss even talking to people at the Bulls organization," he said. "I miss talking to them, talking to my coaching staff, but it's not stressful. I'm not panicking or anything," he said. "I'm just taking my time."

He's spent much of the offseason working out in Los Angeles.

He was also part of a promotional tour to China with adidas and just got back from a vacation with his mother in Bora Bora.

"It's a blessing at a young age," he said. "I'm only 22 and I've seen almost half the world. I don't take it for granted at all."

Rose spoke on the playground at Murray Park in the rough Englewood neighborhood, a few blocks from his boyhood home and the place where he developed his skills as a youngster. Several of his sponsors, with Powerade leading the way, helped fund renovations that began in May, and 100 children were on hand for the unveiling.

"Just coming back here, I know it means a lot not only to me but the community," Rose said. "If I was younger, I think it would be cool that if a guy that made it before me came back and just showed that he appreciated us and didn't forget about us. Every day, every time I play, they're the reason that I play now. This court is what brings everyone together."

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