Central Notes: Dunleavy, Morris, Bulls

Bulls small forward Mike Dunleavy underwent a successful low back microdiscectomy procedure earlier today at Rush University Medical Center and he is expected to be out of action for 8-10 weeks, the team announced. Dunleavy had experienced some occasional back discomfort over the summer which had recently worsened, according to the release. If his recovery goes as planned, Dunleavy will likely miss between 12-15 contests.

Here’s more from the Central Division:

  • Marcus Morris views his new start with the Pistons as a means to finally carve out a niche for himself in the league, Keith Langlois of NBA.com writes. “In Phoenix, I thought I should have started at the three,” Morris told Langlois. “The guy that’s there now [P.J. Tucker] might have been a better defender, but as an all-around three, I thought I was the best we had. And I thought a lot of players thought that, too. But there’s a lot of opportunity here. I have a chance to come in and start right away. I’ve been in the league for five years. It’s nothing new to me. I have started my share of games. It’s not like I’m new to it. The only thing that’s new is that it’s the East Coast now.”
  • The Bulls return virtually the same core as last season, and if the change in coaches from Tom Thibodeau to Fred Hoiberg doesn’t nudge the team to the next level, it may be time for Chicago to attempt to pry Carmelo Anthony away from the Knicks, Nick Friedell of ESPNChicago.com writes. Friedell does note that the size of Anthony’s contract would be a gamble for Bulls, and the team would likely have to part with a number of talented players to make the deal work financially, which would make such a trade a risky proposition for Chicago.
  • If the Cavaliers can remain healthy as a unit and are able to secure home court advantage in the playoffs, the team is likely to secure the NBA title in 2015/16, the crew at Basketball Insiders opine in their season preview.
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