JANUARY 26: Ball will have surgery this Friday, January 28, according to coach Billy Donovan, K.C. Johnson of NBC Sports Chicago tweets. As Donovan previously noted, Ball’s six-to-eight week recovery timeline will begin once the injury is repaired.
JANUARY 21: Bulls head coach Billy Donovan told reporters, including K.C. Johnson and Rob Schaefer of NBC Sports Chicago (Twitter links), that Ball will have surgery next week and will rehab and do strength work in the meantime. Donovan also clarified that Ball is suffering from a bone bruise as well as a torn meniscus, and the six-to-eight week recovery timeline will start once he has the procedure.
JANUARY 20, 12:48pm: The Bulls have confirmed in a press release that Ball will undergo arthroscopic surgery on his left knee following an “initial period of rest and targeted intervention.” He’s expected to return to action in about six-to-eight weeks, according to the team.
JANUARY 20, 9:43am: Bulls guard Lonzo Ball has been diagnosed with a small meniscus tear in his left knee and is considering his treatment options, reports Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter links).
As Charania explains, there’s a possibility that Ball will be able to play through the injury while team doctors keep an eye on his knee, but if that’s not deemed viable, he’ll undergo surgery and would miss several weeks. Ball underwent arthroscopic surgery to address a similar injury in the same knee during July of 2018, K.C. Johnson of NBC Sports Chicago notes (via Twitter).
According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN (Twitter links), the Bulls and Ball are expected to finalize a decision within the next couple days. If he goes under the knife, the 24-year-old would probably be sidelined for about four-to-six weeks, sources tell Wojnarowski.
As we relayed on Wednesday night, head coach Billy Donovan told reporters that the initial treatment plan on Ball’s knee injury was unsuccessful and that team doctors were waiting to see how the knee responded to the new treatment before making any decisions on a course of action and recovery timeline. Ball isn’t accompanying the team on its three-game road trip to Milwaukee (Friday), Orlando (Sunday), and Oklahoma City (Monday).
In his first season in Chicago, Ball is averaging 13.0 PPG, 5.4 RPG, and 5.1 APG on .423/.423/.750 in 35 games (34.6 MPG). He has been the team’s full-time starter at the point and has played a key role in the team’s turnaround, along with fellow newcomers DeMar DeRozan and Alex Caruso.
While Ball’s diagnosis isn’t great news for the Bulls, the team did get Caruso back in its lineup on Wednesday night following a 13-game absence due to foot and hamstring injuries, as well as a stint in the health and safety protocols. Caruso’s role would increase if Ball misses a significant period of time, with Ayo Dosunmu and Coby White also playing important minutes.