Tom Thibodeau thinks Derrick Rose doesn’t get foul calls because he’s ‘a nice guy’

, on November 5, 2013 , 4:50PM



Back in ye olden days of 2011 and 2012, Derrick Rose was a foul-drawing machine. After averaging just 3.7 attempts per game during his first two years, Rose jacked that number up to 6.9 in 2010-11 and 6.1 the next season. Not coincidentally, Rose’s scoring average took off, he won an MVP and the Bulls finished two straight seasons as the league’s No. 1 regular season team. It was pretty chill.


But then Rose’s knee exploded, he took a year off to find himself and he’s returned to the court, where he’s averaging just 3.3 free throws per game. That’s quite the drop-off and it’s a huge part of the reason Rose is currently averaging a career-low 14.3 points per game, though the 28.8 percent shooting from the field might have something to do with that too.


Nonetheless, the free throw rate decrease is troubling. Luckily, Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau knows what is happening. From the Chicago Sun-Times:


‘‘Next question,’’ coach Tom Thibodeau said before weighing in. ‘‘I’ll say this: I don’t know of anyone who drives as hard as he does. Nor as fast as he does. And I think sometimes he’s penalized for being a nice guy. I’ll leave it at that.’’


Well, that is certainly one interpretation. Derrick Rose does seem exceedingly nice, so maybe referees think that no one would want to foul him. Or maybe it’s just that the officials know that he’s so nice that he won’t complain if he doesn’t get a call. Either way, I see the logic, though it’s pretty easy to shoot holes in this theory since Kevin Durant — who is so nice that Nike made a campaign trying to convince people he wasn’t — is leading the league with an astronomical 14.0 free throw attempts per game. Turns out you can get foul calls when you’re courteous.


Personally, I think the reasons Rose is drawing fewer foul calls this season are that he’s taking a greater proportion of threes than in any other year of his career, he’s turning the ball over all the time and he is VERY squiggly around the rim. The first one is easy to see, as his three-point attempt rate (the percentage of his attempts that are threes) is the highest it’s ever been in his career. The second is pretty self-explanatory too, as Rose is leading the NBA in turnovers per game and rocking the highest turnover rate he’s ever had in his career. Between being farther from the basket and losing the ball a bunch, these two things make sense to me.


As for the third, it’s more of a feel thing that you get from watching his twisty-turny finishes at the rim. Yeah, they always look awesome, and I have a feeling he would win a league-wide fancy layup contest, but being able to duck out of the way and still make shots means he might get fouled less. In fact, this is something we’ve been over before, long ago. And it’s even something Rose admitted to adjusting to during his MVP year. From the AP in 2011, back when he was Mr. Foul Shots:


The All-Star point guard credited a little film study for his abundance of free throws. Rose said he noticed recently he needed to take another dribble on his drives so he could get deeper into the lane and draw more fouls.


“Usually I just try to take off and avoid the contact or take off, and they block my shot or something,” he said. “Just making sure I take my time in the hole and go up to their body first.”


I’m not smart enough to know if Rose has or hasn’t been intentionally taking the extra dribble or finding a body to hit before worrying about getting the shot up, but I do know that this is something that has happened before, which means I wouldn’t be surprised if the same thing is happening again, especially coming off a major injury that led to a year-and-a-half off from professional basketball. Because if Rose had to learn how to draw fouls, which he did, it kind of makes sense that he’d have to re-learn it. And it makes even more sense that smashing in to opponents wouldn’t be tops on his list while trying to figure out how to be a superstar again.


Then again, maybe it’s just the nice guy thing. I mean, there’s a Green Day song about it, so it must be true.


(via BDL)

20 Responses to “Tom Thibodeau thinks Derrick Rose doesn’t get foul calls because he’s ‘a nice guy’”

  1. kate says:

    Yay! Comments-on-pictures are back! (Also, your logic makes sense.)

  2. hahahah says:

    Tom Thibodeau Thinks Derrick Rose Doesn’t Get Foul Calls Because He’s ‘A Nice Guy’ ??? haha rose is overrated even the referees saw that he is nothing but a flopper

  3. Oscar Osuna says:

    Derrick rose isn’t nothing he is to overrated and he’s garbage I can cross him up cetics are better than the kings

  4. Kevo says:

    @Hahahah: And your comment is idiotic if you think Rose is overrated… probably a bandwagon Heat fan who’s trying to project the fact that Heat have done more flopping in a single season than most players will ever do in their entire careers. You fail at your attempt to insult an undeniably talented player. Go away troll.

    • Julio says:

      are you talking about Rose, the generic of Wade? yes he is an overrated player. ( is he gay? ) he look like one of the Village’s people. guy.

  5. Oscar Osuna says:

    Derrick Rose is a flopper he’s worse than Chris Bosh if anything Rose should be fined 1.5 million dollars if hes good at one thing hes good at flopping

  6. Kevo says:

    Stfu Oscar, you fail at grammar. Isn’t nothing means he is not nothing which means he is something. What a moron…

    Also, go ahead and try out for the Celtics then if you think you can cross up an NBA player… I know the Celtics are hurting for talent anyway… not that you would be able to stop their bleeding… And of course the Celtics are better than the Kings… nearly every team is. That’s like saying a bodybuilder can lift more than a bunch of babies… The sheer amount of stupidity on this website is astounding…

  7. Oscar Osuna says:

    actually im a Pacers fan who are going to beat the bulls today

  8. its allbout them wizards

  9. Devin says:

    you don’t win an MVP award by being a good flopper..that makes no sense..

  10. Chris says:

    Why is everyone who comments on these things so retarded?

  11. Breyzh says:

    It didn’t used to be like that (retarded/troll/bait/angry comments) in the TBJ era.
    I blame David Stern.

  12. kenObi says:

    I respect DRose’ game but I hate the so-much drama about “The Return”.Return what?The Miami Heat make them feel the return to reality that wethr DRose is healthy or not the Bulls cant beat the Heat in the post-season.Even if the year DRose won the MVP..Lebron block his potential game tying shot and maybe..just maybe utter some words to him “give me my mvp”.I dont like the too much hype moving around with DRose.For me,there is still too much to prove for him to be on that same level with Lebron and Kobe etc

  13. Boyd says:

    DRose is a champion and he always will be and yes he is not at his best but you wait for mid season when the MVP is looking like it will be his once again. GO DRose!!! GO Bulls!!!!

  14. Memeh says:

    Rose is not getting to the foul line because he is flopping less. The referees are more strict now about flopping and he is afraid to flop much anymore, but don’t worry, he will soon find a way to keep the flopping alive.

  15. Bill Collins says:

    I am NOT a Bulls fan but I follow the Central Division closely. Rose is such a strong player that other teams play him tight to try to hold him in check. His opponents respect how dangerous he is and respect him as a superstar. No one wants to be the reason for a re-injury to him, it would put a black mark on their good name. As the season progresses and his full recovery is verified things will return to normal. We want our teams to beat the Bulls with a healthy Rose in the rotation. Wins resulting from injuries ring hollow. Now beating the best is worth a victory cigar.

  16. Cameron Crawford says:

    I am astonished how anyone can call D Rose overated and a flopper. That is one of the most inaccurate statements I have ever heard about anyone. Lebron gets away with more flops in a half of basketball then the Bobcats do in one season. If anything Lebron is the most overated player in the NBA. The only reason he has what he has is because the commissioner favors him. Thats the only reason the Heat won the last 2 championships and why they will win it this year.

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