by Carlos Nazario
After Rose tore his ACL and had his season ended, well wishes from many NBA players came streaming in via Twitter. Heat superstar Dwyane Wade expressed his concern for Rose. “I said a prayer for him and his family,” Wade said. “You never want to see anyone get injured, especially a player of his caliber. Very unfortunate. You hope he does his best to rehab and gets back to being the D-Rose that everyone loves.”
One person who did not have the same feelings for Rose was Lebron James’ shoe designer, Jason Petrie. He mocked Rose on Twitter, and tried to make a link between his injury and the shoes he endorsed (Rose endorses Adidas, James Nike).
Petrie Tweeted, “You got only one guy getting stronger, and one guy breaking down before our very eyes.” Rose “chose poorly” and “#shouldasignedwithNIKE #GWS (Get well soon).”
Get well soon? He had the gall to say that after mocking him? I am sure Rose appreciated that last part after being mocked.
Nike later apologized for the comment, saying it was inappropriate. “As a brand that is passionate about sport, we recognize the intense level of play that every athlete has engaged in during this basketball season and respect the dedication it takes to compete. One of our basketball footwear designers posted comments online that we feel are inappropriate, and he has since apologized. We wish anyone who is injured a speedy recovery.”
Now, let’s go to that “apology.” This is what is on his Twitter timeline: “Wow! Twitterverse I do apologize. It was really just tongue n cheek! Never meant any harm or disrespect!”
As I said, that is what is on his timeline. What IS NOT THERE and was deleted were these gems- “(H)ahaha, they act like I give a DAMN!!! #youhavenoidea #dontknowme,” or “Just to set the record straight-if you ain’t with me you against me, and if that’s the case I don’t give a F about you! #FACTS #hateit4u.”
Yep, sounds like a man who is repentant, right? The interesting thing is that Lebron himself has been silent. He has not condemned the comments, only having Nike itself do it. He has not even said anything at all about Rose.
This bad blood seems to stem from Rose rejecting James and his people throughout his career. James’ main man is Maverick Carter, CEO of LRMR. His company tried to recruit Rose after he came out of Memphis. James had a stable of point guards affiliated with his company and represented by Nike. Rose opted to go on his own and also signed with Adidas. That was the start.
When James was a free agent, many thought the Chicago Bulls had a great shot at signing him. Owner Jerry Reindsdorf and GM Gar Forman, along with President John Paxson, implored Rose to talk to James about coming to Chicago. While Rose texted James, he did not make a whole-hearted recruiting effort.
When Lebron returned to Cleveland his first year as a Heat, it seemed everyone was going to watch the game. Well, not everyone. When asked if he would watch the game, Rose quipped “Probably not,” Rose said. “I’ve got my second season of ‘Dexter’ so I’m good.”
Then there is the current issue of GQ Magazine, when Rose was asked if he worried about having his hometown turn on him the way Cleveland did to James. “I won’t ever put myself in a bad position so that people can say bad things about me. I make smart decisions, and my friends and my family, they are all there for the right reason. I’m very mature for 23 years old, and I know that whatever I do can hurt someone.”
It is no surprise that people who feel slighted by what was said would take the first opportunity to take a shot at him. It just shows the class (or lack thereof) some people have. It will just fuel Rose to come back as strong as ever and to hold up that trophy in front of his hometown.