The Chicago Bulls have clinched the top seed in the Eastern Conference and they have an outside shot at claiming the top overall record in the NBA. The catalyst behind the Bulls this year has been Derrick Rose. He's been incredible all season, but this incredible season didn't happen overnight.
Rose was considered an athletic guard who couldn't shoot when he came into the NBA. He was true to form in his first two seasons, as he was sporadic with his mid-range shot and anemic in his three-point shooting. Then came the summer of 2010. When Rose wasn't playing for Team USA, he was in Los Angeles shooting jump shot after jump shot. He was determined that he would make himself a better shooter so he could help his team. Fast forward to the 2010-2011 season and Rose has made the mid-range jumper with more regularity and he has also hit more three-pointers this year than in his first two years combined.
Another thing Rose did this year was he became more vocal. When Tom Thibideaux came to Chicago, he knew that Rose had to become the unquestioned leader of this team. Rose is more quiet player by nature, but he took the challenge and became more of a voice for his team. His influence and leadership during the clutch times of games has been invaluable this year.
But, by far the biggest thing that makes Rose an MVP is his attitude towards the game. A lot of people think that Rose may shoot too much or not do all the things a traditional point guard would do. But what they're not paying attention to is his words. Rose's drive is solely on winning. An example of his winning attitude is the comments he said after their win in New York. Rose was asked about the MVP Award and he said the following: "I haven't won the award yet, but no one remembers you for that. People remember you in this league for winning."
The Bulls will be a dangerous team in the playoffs. Some have them as a legit title contender. A huge part of that is Rose because he bought into doing whatever he needed to do for his team to win. Whether it be taking over in crunch time, dishing to an open man or making a defensive play, Rose has set the standard and pace for his team to follow.