It’s pretty obvious that, no matter how strong-willed he may be, Derrick Rose more than likely won’t be suiting up again this season. But reporters keep pestering him about the extremely remote possibility. The Bulls superstar guard says the thought hasn’t even crossed his mind during rehab from knee surgery. Per the Chicago Tribune:

“I haven’t even had a chance to think about it,” Rose said Wednesday night at the Bulls’ charity gala at the United Center when asked if he’s done for the season. “I’m just worrying about my next stage in this process and that’s running right now. I’m on the AlterG (an anti-gravity treadmill). Hopefully be running without it pretty soon.

“I’m not keeping (a return) open. I just said right now I’m not thinking about it. I’m not running yet. When I get off the AlterG, that’s when I’ll consider coming back or not.”

General manager Gar Forman reiterated the Bulls have no plans for Rose to return this season.

“We’re still working on the premise that he’s out for the year,” Forman said. “Everything with his rehab is on schedule and he’s doing well.”

Rose confirmed this, saying his knee feels good and he remains positive during his second straight season of rehabilitation. Rose missed all last season after surgery to repair the torn left ACL he suffered in April 2012.

“It’s an easier process for sure, but I’m able to walk,” Rose said. “It feels normal right now, but I know it’s not there.”

On Dec. 5, in his other public comments, Rose said “you can be a fool if you want to” when asked about those who doubt he can return to an elite level as the franchise centerpiece. This single-minded belief and focus surely informs his inability to acknowledge the organization publicly stating he’s out for the season.

“Yeah, for sure,” Rose said, when asked if he will attend the (Team USA minicamp in July in Las Vegas.) “If my leg is feeling healthy and I’m there, I’m all in. Of course I want to play for that team. Playing for that team (at the 2010 FIBA World Championships) helped the (2010-11) year I won MVP, just getting in a groove. So I’m excited if I’m able to play in it.”