WASHINGTON, D.C. --- Derrick Rose didn't just let himself and his teammates down. He let the entire city of Chicago down when he missed two free throws with 22.7 left that could've given the Bulls the lead in an eventual loss to the Miami Heat on Sunday, or at least that's how he sees it.
"I'm just hurt not for me but for the city of Chicago," Rose said. "Knowing how big that game was not only to me and the organization but to our fans. That's a rivalry. You have your best player, and he has the opportunity to take the lead and I didn't come through. The only thing I can do is hope the fans stick with me and stay with me. I promise I won't let them down again."
Twenty-four yours later, Rose was still trying to get his mind around his failure. People, including his brothers, who were in Miami, have tried to encourage him. He vows to make up for it next time.
"That's something I live for," he said. "I think of my legacy. I want people to think of me as a clutch player, someone that always came through a majority of the time when they were on the court. Yesterday, it hurt a little bit but it will help me in the long run."
Rose said his sprained left big toe is no longer bothering him and that getting rest is now his biggest priority, along with keeping his hometown happy.
"I like to see my city happy, especially if I'm one of the reasons why," he said. "I know what we went through when [Michael Jordan] left. We went through a lot of years where people didn't really watch the Bulls. For them to start watching the Bulls, and for the organization to get our fans back means a lot to me. When you see people and they have Bulls hats on and Bulls apparel on it means a lot to me."