After a 4 game losing streak, the Cleveland Cavaliers are finally back on track. The Cavaliers have been struggling to keep up with contending teams such as the Toronto Raptors and even the Indiana Pacers. Picking up a much-needed win finally against the Orlando Magic in a 104-103 victory. While LeBron James is chasing his 30,000 career points Derrick Rose has provided a spark for the Cavs off the bench.

Rose can Bloom off the Bench.

(Photo by David Liam Kyle/NBAE via Getty Images)

There’s been a lot of question whether Derrick can still be a valuable asset to the Cavaliers since his injury on November 24th.

Besides the strong criticism, Rose proved he’s still a valuable asset on the floor. Derrick would put up 9 PTS, 3 REBS, 1 AST and 1 BLK in just 13 MINS, shooting 3-6 (50%) FG. He finished the game with the highest +/- on the Cavs with +5. The Cavaliers have needed a spark off the bench when LeBron James isn’t on the floor, a scoring threat who can create their own shot. That’s everything Rose brings to the team, pushing the pace with his speed and insane athleticism despite numerous injuries.

It still will take time to mesh Rose into the second-unit with Dwyane Wade. As it seems there is a lack of chemistry with Wade and Rose handling the ball. With time eventually the Chicago native’s should adjust to their new roles.

Rose isn’t much of a playmaker, mostly because he’s adjusting to playing off-ball more often. But there’s no excuse why Derrick still is getting more turnovers than assist. The Cavs guard isn’t known for defense, but when Rose plays isolation defense he’s actually a decent defender. Only when screened the 6’3 guard can be seen either being lazy or just not knowing how to properly defend off a screen.

Currently Rose has a better defensive (116) and offensive rating (97) than Isaiah Thomas with 93 ORtg and 117 DRtg, who just posted a season-high 21 points. Isaiah has been struggling to be efficient, shooting just 6-15 (40%) FG and 3-10 (30%) 3PT in the win against the Magic. He currently has a higher usage rate than LeBron James at 34.4%. Which while Rose was a starter he never got close to at 26.3% USG.

 

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“I thought D-Rose was good for us tonight,” said Tyronn Lue. “Getting to the paint and drawing those fouls.”

However don’t be concerned just yet, Thomas has been a decent playmaker for the Cavs so far. While Rose has more turnovers (21) than assists (13), Thomas has had more 21 assists and 14 turnovers in the 6 games he’s played so far. While he’s been struggling at the three shooting 25%, he still helps the Cavs spacing by knocking down almost 2 threes a game.

Still, Rose has been more efficient and utilized much less. But Thomas has just come off a hip injury that kept him out for a good portion of the season. It’s too soon to even consider a role swap especially since Rose has just come back from an ankle injury. To help keep him healthy Cavs would more than likely prefer him off the bench to help push their offensive pace.

Just as we give Thomas some slack, Rose deserves it as well for his ankle injury, so let’s keep that in mind going into next game.