Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose said Thursday he won't close the door on returning for the playoffs if his surgically repaired knee is up to it.

"If I'm healthy and the situation is right, I'm going to be back playing," Rose said Thursday during a news conference in his first public comments since tearing the meniscus in his right knee Nov. 22. "If I'm healthy and my meniscus is fully healed, of course I'll be out there playing. But if it's something totally different and the outcome is not how I would want it to be, there's no need."

The Bulls declared Rose out for the season after he had surgery on the meniscus Nov. 25. General manager Gar Forman told last week that Rose is "really out" for the season regardless of the Bulls' potential for a postseason berth.

Whenever he returns, Rose is confident he'll still be an elite player.