Bulls guard Zach LaVine has been playing through a right hand contusion, and it has been affecting his performance. Including Tuesday’s loss to Indiana, in which Chicago blew a 21-point lead, LaVine has gone 6-of-36 (16.7%) from three-point range over his past five games.
K.C. Johnson of NBC Sports Chicago asked him about his struggles after the game.
“I’m playing with a messed-up finger obviously on my shooting hand,” LaVine said. “You can see by the numbers I’m not shooting the ball well from three. I can still get to the cup and shoot free throws, shoot mid-range. Obviously, you can see by the numbers it’s affecting my shot. But it’s not going to keep me from trying to go out there and help and contribute.”
As Johnson notes, LaVine wasn’t on the injury report prior to the game and was previously only listed as probable after suffering the injury on January 11. The 27-year-old is getting regular treatment and is playing with a brace, and while he says it’s painful at times, he’s not using it as an excuse.
“If I’m out there, I’m healthy enough to play,” he said, per Johnson.
Here’s more out of Chicago:
- The Bulls held a team meeting after their three-game win streak came to an end in disappointing fashion against Indiana on Tuesday night, but it remains to be seen whether it will help get the team out of a cycle of inconsistency and mediocrity, writes Darnell Mayberry of The Athletic. “Honestly, there’s not much to be said,” Nikola Vucevic said after the Bulls were outscored by 22 points in the second half of a six-point loss. “There’s nothing you can say. It’s just a lot of frustration. We did all the talking. So we’ve just got to do it or this is where we’re going to be.”
- There’s still some uncertainty surrounding Javonte Green‘s recovery following knee surgery, as Joe Cowley of The Chicago Sun-Times relays. The Bulls forward has yet to resume running or jumping, according to head coach Billy Donovan. “I’ll probably get a better idea of where he’s at physically once they say he can get on the court and start moving around a little bit, but he has not been able to do any of that,” Donovan said.
- Former fourth overall pick Patrick Williams hasn’t necessarily developed at the rate the Bulls had hoped, but the team views performances like Monday’s 18-point, 10-rebound showing as a sign that he’s continuing to move forward, even if the progress is slow, Cowley writes for The Sun-Times. “One of the most versatile players on this team,” DeMar DeRozan said of Williams. “Once he gets comfortable and realizes what he’s doing now it’s going to help us even more.”
Rory Maher contributed to this post.