MRI reveals no structural damage to Derrick Rose's back

ByIan Begley ESPN logo
Thursday, December 8, 2016

NEW YORK -- Knicks point guard Derrick Rosesat out Wednesday night's 126-94 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers due to lingering soreness in his back.

Brandon Jennings started in his place.

Rose had an MRI on Wednesday evening to determine the nature of the injury, and it revealed no structural damage, the team said. He is expected to travel with the Knicks on their upcoming West Coast road trip, which begins Friday night against theSacramento Kings. He is considered day-to-day.

Rose first suffered back spasms during the Knicks' win over the Miami Heat on Tuesday. He left the game in the third quarter and did not return.

He received treatment from team doctors during the day Wednesday.Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek was optimistic that Rose would play in the Knicks' game against the Kings.

"Hopefully, with what our trainers can do, all of the sudden he wakes up two days from now and says, 'Hey, I feel pretty good,'" Hornacek said. "The good thing is there's nothing major wrong with it, just probably typical wear and tear, bumps and grinds."

The severity of Rose's back issue was unclear after Tuesday's game, although the point guard told reporters it had "calmed down."

"He says it's tight," Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek said postgame on Tuesday. "It kind of goes from his groin to his lower back, so hopefully they'll give him some treatment after the game and ... we'll see if he can be all right for [Wednesday] night."

Rose said after Tuesday's contest that there was no structural issue with his back. He had hoped to play against Cleveland on Wednesday but noted that he would be "smart" about it.

"It calmed down, it just spasmed. Usually when you have back problems, or back spasms, it comes from somewhere else, and tonight my right side, my right leg, everything was fatiguing kind of quick," Rose said, adding that it was a muscular issue.

The 28-year-old guard had been healthy and productive for the Knicks prior to the back spasm flare-up on Tuesday.

In his first 20 games of the season, Rose averaged 17 points, 4.9 assists and 4.2 rebounds for the Knicks, now 12-10.

Rose has a long injury history, though not related to his back.

Entering this season, the 2011 NBA MVP had played just 39 percent of his games in the previous four seasons due to various injuries, including three significant knee ailments.

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