On Derrick Rose: Whether he was merely beginning some midseason stumping or taking an uncharacteristically strong -- if biased -- stand publicly, Vinny Del Negro declared Derrick Rose the NBA Rookie of the Year on Monday, Jan. 19, 2009. "No debate; it's over," Del Negro said. "There's not even a conversation as far as I'm concerned. And I know [Memphis' O.J.] Mayo is having a great year. And I think [Miami's Michael] Beasley is incredibly talented and can score. But no one has played at the level Derrick has from the start to this point. It's not even close." On April 22, 2009, Rose became the recipient of the Eddie Gottlieb Trophy as the 2008-09 T-Mobile NBA Rookie of the Year.
Tribune photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo