BOSTON --- Derrick Rose isn't moving like the quickest and perhaps most dynamic player in the NBA. He was walking like an old man in the locker room before Sunday's game against the Celtics. The 23-year old said he feels old, too.
"Never," Rose said when asked if he had ever had this much discomfort for this long during his playing career. "That's what really killing me right now. Missing this many games, it's killing me not to be out there but as long as we're winning games I'm happy."
Rose will not play against the Celtics today because of a back injury that he said makes it difficult for him to walk when it's at its worst. It's the seventh game this season he has had to sit out because of injuries. Not only has his back forced him to miss back-to-back games but he said it has bothered him during the Bulls entire nine-game road trip.
He also said he had a similar injury to his lower back when he was a senior at Simeon.
"The first time I remember it happening was in high school," Rose said. "I didn't have it in college. My first couple years I didn't have it. All of a sudden it has happened now. Hopefully, tomorrow we'll meet with some people and try to figure something out."
Rose said he will meet with specialists in Chicago on Monday.
"You're always concerned," Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau said. "It's something he has had before. He had it when he was in high school. We're hopeful it will get cleared up quickly but we're not sure."
Rose has been selected to start for the Eastern Conference in the All-Star Game on Feb. 26. Both he and Thibodeau said it's too early to start thinking about whether it might be wise for him to rest and prepare himself for the second half of the season rather than go to Orlando.
"I haven't thought about it," Rose said. "It could be tomorrow and I wake up and it feels good. I remember in high school I didn't get any treatment or anything. I just knew I took a couple of days off and I was able to play downstate and I didn't feel it. Hopefully, it's the same thing."