Derrick Rose. (Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
BOSTON (WBZ-AM) -- It was a mild surprise when the Timberwolves fired head coach Tom Thibodeau Sunday after a blowout of the Lakers, and it didn't sit well with one of his stars, Derrick Rose, who played under him for parts of seven seasons.
The former NBA MVP rejuvenated his career under Thibodeau, but had strong words for anyone who doubts he'll continue to shine for a new coach.
"I was in Cleveland practicing at Cleveland State by myself," he said. "Teams wasn't looking for me at all, I was basically out the league. He believed in me, I believed in myself, my family believed in me. But everybody that thinks that I'm not gonna play the same way? Kill yourself, because I believe in myself."
Rose actually used the phrase twice.
In a progressive league where All-Stars Kevin Love and DeMar DeRozan are among those to have raised awareness for mental health, the comment was unsettling.
Rose quickly tweeted, "I messed up by using the slang term 'kill yourself' today in response to a question about whether I can continue to perform without coach Thibs. I did not mean it literally and regret using it so I apologize."
WBZ NewsRadio's Adam Kaufman (@AdamMKaufman) reports