“He’s one of the hardest workers in the game and that’s why he’s one of the best players in the game,” Love said. “He worked extremely hard (last summer), but he also worked extremely smart, too. A lot of things he did with his body to make sure he was good to go and also he took certain days off and hit hard the next day. So he’s an extremely efficient hard worker and I admire a guy like that.
“I have no doubt in my mind that he’ll come back and be D. Rose.”
Love said he hasn’t had communication with Rose after he suffered a torn right medial meniscus on Nov. 22, choosing to give him space as he knows the frustration of dealing with a series of injuries.
He missed 64 games last season for Minnesota with injuries to his hand and knee.
“I’m sure like most people, I just give him a little space because I know it’s tough to go through a series of injuries like that,” Love said. “I know that’s very tough, but Derrick’s the type of guy that’s going to do everything he can to get back on the floor 100 percent as quickly as he can.”
Love was the fifth pick in the 2008 NBA draft that Rose went number one overall and the two have spent the past few summers since that time working out with trainer Rob McClanaghan in Los Angeles, where both have homes.
Rose and Love were teammates on the FIBA World Championship Team USA squad and both will be competing in June as Rose will try to play for USA Basketball in this summer's FIBA Worldcup in Spain.
The Bulls are sure to have their hands full with the Timberwolves who come into Monday’s matchup second in the league in scoring at 106.8 ppg,
“They have a lot of weapons and put a lot of pressure on you at all times with how they push the ball,” Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau said. “I think Love with his outlet passing, Brewer with his ability to run the floor, Pekovic and Love with their offensive rebounding and then a guy like Rubio who can break you down off the dribble puts enormous pressure on you to both contain the ball and finish your defense. They’re a great offensive team.”
Love expects nothing more than a physical battle with the Bulls, who he holds high respect for as they continue to find ways to win despite injuries.
“They play hard. Thibodeau is a great coach,” Love said. “He gets these guys ready to play every single night, no matter who they have on the team on any given night. He’s a great coach, they have great players on their team. They work extremely hard and I think that’s why they’re so good and they persevere.”