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Updated: Nov 22, 2020

Chicago born and bread, beloved by the city, and hated on in the next breath, the Chi-Town Way!!

"You either good or you great," I take this quote from rapper Jeezy, from a song titled "The American Dream," a title aptly fitted for our Chicago brother. No matter how a selective group that lived in the upper part of the city felt about him, he was and is our brother. To many young men Derrick Rose has been a hero. When he sat on the stage and cried after receiving his ninety plus million dollar Addidas deal, we felt him. We understood when he said, "I'm a just a kid from Chicago, I'm not supposed to even be here," we clearly knew that he didn't feel he didn't deserve his ticket, but at the same time he was expressing his gratitude! Growing up in poverty, adverse conditions, violence, and every other negative situation, when the Lord blesses you to not only survive, but to make it to a position that neither you, or your family and friends have to live that way ever again, it can be overwhelming.

I had the opportunity to meet D. Rose, he sat in the car at a barbershop waiting on a friend before coming inside. We all were excited, but we made sure to not take away the moment that he seemed to want to enjoy, and that was normalcy! He sat right next to me, and we continued having regular barbershop talk, which he joined in. This was post him receiving the rookie of the year, at the time when Chicago was courting Carmelo Anthony becoming a Bull for the first time. When Rose went down because of injury, those of us that always loved him never stopped, even when he was traded, we realized that for him it may have been the best thing. Since overcoming adversity, our brother is looking like he's pretty close to being back to himself, physically, mentally, and spiritually. 2Pac used to compare himself to the rose that grew through the concrete, he said don't marvel that the roses pedals are damaged from pushing through the concrete, you should ask yourself, how the hell did the rose grow through that in the first place!! Concrete Rose.

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