The Chicago Bulls have been dealing with nagging injuries for the majority of the second half of the season. As they prepare for their first round matchup against the Milwaukee Bucks, they have key players who are entering the series dealing with injuries.
Here’s a review of each player’s injury update as of Apr. 16:
Chicago Bulls players nursing an injury:
The Bulls star has played in every meaningful game this season and will be available in the first round. That much isn’t up in the air.
His being at 100% is up in the air, however. He suffered a left adductor strain in late March and has missed multiple practices since. The team added him to the injury report on Apr. 2 and he has not left. If the series is to go long, the strain could slow him down.
Zach LaVine has been dealing with knee pain for most of the second half of the season. He got his knee treated in Los Angeles prior to the All-Star break but has still felt discomfort, missing games because of it.
His explosiveness at the rim has taken a hit likely because of the injury.
Nikola Vucevic has been dealing with a hamstring injury since early March. The big man is considered healed, but hamstring injuries tend to come back at unpredictable times.
Head coach Billy Donovan is aware of this and has tried tweaking Vucevic’s minutes to save his legs.
Alex Caruso has been dealing with a myriad of injuries, the most prevalent being his wrist. He underwent wrist surgery in late January following a flagrant foul committed on him by Grayson Allen. Caruso missed seven weeks after the surgery and still felt discomfort after his return.
He recently started to experience back tightness as well. He attributes the new injury to his seven-week layoff following his surgery but is set to play in the first round– saying that he is “as close to 100 percent as he can be right now.”
Javonte Green suffered a quad injury in late March and became day-to-day. While the team isn’t freaking out over the injury, any setback will throw Green out of the mix.
Derrick Jones Jr.
Derrick Jones Jr., though out of the rotation, has been battling knee soreness for most of the second half of the year. He took a scary fall in the team’s game against the Brooklyn Nets. He had to miss eight weeks.
His role on the team has shrunk since, but he may play a big role in the first round due to his defensive capabilities.
Coby White missed the final regular season game due to a toe injury.
Chicago Bulls players out for the first round:
Thomas will be unavailable due to a lower leg injury. Bulls head coach Billy Donovan said Thomas (lower leg) didn’t participate in Tuesday’s practice. That said, he’s not a consistent part of the rotation, so his absence won’t affect much.
Lonzo Ball has been out since Jan. 14 due to a left meniscus sprain. He underwent surgery to address the injury on Jan. 28.
Ball’s rehab was paused in late March due to discomfort and swelling following aerobic exercise. He was shut down for the season due to concerns about his longevity and potential discomfort following arthroscopic knee surgery back in January.
Players 100% healthy:
- Tristan Thompson
- Ayo Dosunmu
- Patrick Williams
- Troy Brown
- Tony Bradley