Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine will be sidelined for four to six months after deciding to undergo surgery on his right foot next week. LaVine and his agency, Klutch Sports Group, made the decision after seeking additional medical opinions, according to the team. Bulls coach Billy Donovan stated that it was LaVine’s own choice to have surgery, but acknowledged that the star guard had tried rehabbing his foot before opting for the procedure.
LaVine had been out of action since spraining his right ankle on January 18. Although the ankle sprain had healed, additional foot discomfort has kept him on the sidelines. This same issue previously caused LaVine to miss 17 games earlier in the season. Donovan had mentioned on Friday that the team anticipated LaVine being re-evaluated in about a week. However, LaVine decided that the discomfort in his foot prevented him from performing at his best.
LaVine’s current season comes to an end after only playing 25 games, with 23 starts. Throughout these games, he averaged 19.5 points on 45.2% shooting, marking his lowest scoring average since recovering from ACL surgery in 2017-18. He also contributed with 5.2 rebounds and 3.9 assists per game. Before this injury, LaVine had missed 17 games earlier in the season due to right ankle inflammation. He returned on January 5 and played an additional seven games before re-injuring his ankle.
Known as one of the top names on the trade market ahead of the upcoming deadline, LaVine’s injury may affect the Bulls’ plans. However, Donovan confirmed that no discussions had taken place regarding how the injury would impact the team’s future. The Bulls currently stand in ninth place in the Eastern Conference standings. They have performed relatively well without LaVine, boasting a 13-11 (.542) record, but have struggled when he is on the court, going 10-15.
With LaVine now out for several months, Donovan acknowledged that the team will have to adjust and play without their star guard. Losing a player of his caliber undoubtedly impacts any team. However, Donovan also highlighted the resilience of the team in facing such challenges.
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