The Chicago Bulls' starting point guard Lonzo Ball is set to be re-evaluated in four to six weeks, but head coach Billy Donovan is preparing for an entire season without him. With the season starting in several weeks, the Bulls now face the prospect of being without their two-way ace for an extended period.
Bracing for the worst
As Ball wrapped up his media session, revealing that he can't run and jump, much less play basketball, the weight of the moment hit home for Donovan. And so, when asked if he's heading to the new season with the mindset of not having Ball for the entire season, Donovan said, "I think you have to."
It's not surprising that Donovan is expecting Ball to miss the entire season. The 24-year-old has not played since January 14, when he was diagnosed with a meniscus tear. This debridement procedure that the UCLA product will undergo on Wednesday will be his third on the same knee.
The Bulls announced that Ball would be re-evaluated in four to six weeks, but Ball said that he would not rush back from this injury this time.
"For me, this will be my third surgery so I don't want to rush anything. Like last time, I wanted to get back to the playoffs and stuff. And we all thought it was going to be the case. But unfortunately, it wasn't. So this time I think we just take it however slowly we need to take it and come back 100 %," said Ball.
Bulls' backcourt depth
Fortunately for the Bulls, they do have depth in the backcourt. In fact, point guard is where the team is most deep at. With Alex Caruso, Coby White, Ayo Dosunmo, and the newly-signed Goran Dragic all coming to training camp healthy, the Bulls will have plenty of options to fill the void left by Ball.
"We'll have to see how these guys gel and mesh once training camp starts and we start practicing. But I think we have enough back there that we can get the job done from that standpoint," Donovan said.