Derrick Rose hurt his leg in the first game of the Chicago Bulls’ playoff series against the Philadelphia 76ers. (John Starks / AP)

When Derrick Rose hit the floor April 28 in Game 1 of the Chicago Bulls’ playoff series against Philadelphia, it was clear that he was going to be out a long time and face an intense rehab.

Dr. Brian Cole, who repaired Rose’s torn anterior cruciate ligament and meniscus last weekend, gave a clue of what lies ahead for Rose, estimating that recovery will take eight-to-12 months.

“Derrick is doing great,” Cole said Tuesday at a news conference at Rush University Medical Center (via “The surgery went extremely well. Really no surprises. It was pretty routine.

“We're at this point very optimistic. ... We think of recovery as the long process that's in stages. But the short answer is the time frame we believe an athlete of this caliber generally requires is about eight to 12 months. Sometimes shorter, sometimes longer.

“While he will be at hopefully a very high level at 12 months, it still may take slightly longer for him to be at his pre-injury level. That's not uncommon for athletes of this caliber.”

The uncertainty over Rose’s return and the level at which he will be able to play means the Bulls already face a daunting challenge for next season.

“The most important thing for us right now is his health,” Coach Tom Thibodeau said. “We want him to focus on that. As we said during the season when it happened, it’s a new challenge for us, we’ll get through it, we want him to prioritize his health right now and when he comes back, he comes back. There will be no pressure on him to come back soon. When he’s ready, he’s ready.”

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