And the hits just keep on coming for the Bulls.
Talk about your broken records.
The Bulls Saturday disclosed that rookie forward Chandler Hutchison, coming off his best game of the season with 12 points and 12 rebounds in the Friday 106-101 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers, sustained an acute injury to a seismic bone in his right foot. The Bulls revealed the injury occurred against Atlanta Wednesday. Hutchison played through it until it apparently was realized after Friday's game there was a problem. An MRI Saturday disclosed the issue.
There seem to be no good times rollin' for these Bulls.
The Bulls reported Hutchison will be in a walking boot for two to four weeks and will be reexamined after the All-Star break, which is Feb 15-17. It means almost every member of the Bulls projected starting lineup and their top reserves will miss—or already have missed—double digit games this season due to injury. The Bulls now are closing in on 150 games missed from injury and illness this season.
Plus, neither Zach LaVine nor Lauri Markkanen practiced Saturday. Both were listed as probable for Sunday's 2:30 p.m. game with the Cleveland Cavaliers. LaVine has a sore ankle from a previous sprained ankle and Markannen was listed with a sore hip.
So who is on that Windy City Bulls roster?
Hutchison's injury is yet another discouraging setback for a Bulls team that is 11-38 and trying primarily to judge its young talent going forward.
If the injury sounds familiar, it is similar to the one that ended the Bulls career of Eddie Robinson in 2004. The free agent acquisition was diagnosed with sesamoiditis in both feet, which causes severe pain in the ball of the foot. He ended up getting a buyout and drifting around basketball minor leagues, playing in Canada and in 2017 for the three-on-three Big3 league.
Here are the injuries this season to the core players:
- Kris Dunn, knee. Missed 24 games.
- Zach LaVine, ankle. Missed 5 games.
- Lauri Markkanen, elbow. Missed 23 games.
- Chandler Hutchison, toe. Out indefinitely.
- Wendell Carter Jr., thumb. Out for season.
- Denzel Valentine, ankle. Out for season.
- Bobby Portis, knee, ankle. Missed 31 games.
Ryan Arcidiacono leads the team in games played with 48. He missed one game with a DNP, coach decision. He also leads the team in charges taken.
Hutchison going out may mean often excluded forward Jabari Parker will move back into the starting lineup against Cleveland. Of course, unless he doesn't since Parker was dropped from the playing rotation last month and only recently reinstated and averaging fewer than 20 minutes per game.
Though Parker's presence actually could be a boost for the Bulls winning chances since Parker in his return has been perhaps the team's most efficient scorer.
For the season, Parker is averaging 14.6 points in 27.6 minutes. In his six games since his reappearance, Parker has scored 80 points in 106 minutes, averaging 13.3 points in just 17.7 minutes per game and shooting 60 percent overall and 56 percent on threes.
Parker's homecoming from major free agent acquisition last summer as the team's highest paid player this season to lineup banishment has been one of the major mysteries and curiosities of this season. The speculation is the 6-8, 250-pound Parker is not likely to return for his option season. So perhaps this is an opportunity to enhance his trade value before the Feb. 7 deadline.
Though Parker is just 23 years old and still less than a year since his return from a second ACL surgery. He's proving to be healthy and a dynamic scorer with an effective three-point shot and an ability to enhance the pace of play as a good rebounder who can handle the ball and pass. Perhaps he can be a point forward, at least in the absence of rookie Hutchison?
Parker played more than 20 minutes Friday for the first time since before his benching Dec. 13. He'd said in practice last week after scoring 10 points in 12 minutes in last week's win over the Cavaliers that he deserved more playing time. Parker sat out the Atlanta loss Wednesday with a patella tendon strain apparently sustained in pregame warmups.
"Hopefully I can get in there to my capabilities," Parker said at Thursday practice. "Being a 20-minute, 25-minute guy (is more reasonable)….10 minutes is not fitting for me. Hope to play good minutes. Hopefully, it's not small spurts. Hopefully, I can get in there to my capabilities. I know what I can do. I know who I am. I'm the same player. From there, it's just getting an opportunity to be able to show it.''
These Bulls just can't seem to get no satisfaction.