Feature photo by Keith Allison

Some of these dunks are just plain ridiculous. Derrick Rose is a 6’3” point guard dunking like Dominique or Vinsanity or even Blake Griffin for that matter.  I’m getting texts regularly: “Did you see that?” and “Best Rose dunk ever? Maybe.” My facebook wall fills up with folks posting Derrick Rose highlights. It is time for Derrick Rose to get his recognition on a national level. We know the refs don’t respect him yet, but maybe with an All-Star start under his belt, the calls will come, too.

When it comes to politics, we don’t all see eye to eye. We take our ballots to the voting booth and vote for our candidate who we think is best for Mayor or President or whatever the election may be. One thing NBA All-Star voters should agree on, especially here in Chicago, is that Bulls point guard and hometown hero Derrick Rose deserves our votes to start in this year’s midseason roundball classic in Los Angeles.

Derrick Rose is arguably the most fun player to watch in today’s NBA, but his stats speak for themselves. He is fourth in the East in scoring at 24.0 points per game. He is third in assists with 8.6 per game (the only player in the NBA averaging 24 and 8, by the way). More importantly, he has the Bulls sitting on a 25-13 record which puts them at a #3 seed in the Eastern Conference.

If the name sounds familiar Chicago, it’s because Derrick Rose was born and raised on our South Side. He led Simeon High School to a 93-10 record during his tenure and back to back Illinois State Championships in 2006 and 2007, making them the first Chicago Public League team to win back to back ‘chips, but 2007’s Chicago Tribune Illinois Mr. Basketball doesn’t want us to dwell in the past. He is focused and poised to put Chicago back on the professional basketball map for the first time since ole what’s his name with the statue outside the United Center left town.

Last year, Derrick Rose played as a reserve on the All-Star team. This year, he deserves to start, but he needs our help. As I’m writing this just after te fourth return of fan voting, he places second amomg Eastern Conference guards, taking the lead over Boston’s Rajon Rondo and trailing fellow Chicago native and Miami Heat perennial All-Star Dwyane Wade by close to a million votes. Chicago basketball fans: I’m calling you out. We need to vote Derrick Rose in as a starter this year. Just imagine this lineup for the Eastern Conference: LeBron James and Amare Stoudemire at forwards, Dwight Howard at center, and Wade and Rose at guards…that’ll be tough to beat for the West!

Once you cast your ballot, you can vote again the next day…and the next day…and the day after that…all the way until January 23rd. This is Chicago after all, so vote early and vote often!

Vote at NBA.com or text ROSE to 69622 to make sure Chicago’s own represents in Los Angeles as a starter…

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