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The Bulls will take a cautious approach with guard Lonzo Ball – ready or not

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PARIS – The cold Paris weather in the morning made the team’s photo shoot at the Eiffel Tower a little uncomfortable.

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The nice thing about it was that it included injured point guard Lonzo Ball.

However, you don’t feel comfortable with this idea. That image may be as close as possible this season.

After Paul gave a rare media interview on Monday and took an optimistic approach to trying to make a comeback at some point in the 2022-23 season, coach Billy Donovan was more cautious about the process and insisted on the idea of ​​dropping him for the playoffs. If it was when it was ready, it wasn’t really on the table.

“No, without him having some kind of… I don’t think we’re talking about five days,” Donovan said when the ball was cleared. “I think it will be weeks for him to pick himself up. And then it will be like, ‘Okay, he had a hard workout and got up. Can he come back and do it the next day? Or is he, “He had a really good three days but he needs a day off.” All of these things must be managed. Because no one really knows outside of his rehab and he and the doctor, what does this look like on call? And how does he feel the next day after contact? I think all of these things will be variables for his return to play.”

What changed in Ball’s recovery from two left knee surgeries in less than a year was the idea of ​​him being around the team a little more. If his rehabilitation allows, the organization will need to take Ball on more future road trips and keep him engaged with teammates and practices.

Where it will be interesting is, will organization and the ball be on the same page when the time comes to step up contact and start preparing for matches? The last scenario that the Bulls need is to get him back into the playoffs and then have setbacks that will last until next season.

Ball’s mentality was that he’s a player with a high IQ and once he’s released he can be eliminated no matter the size of the games – regular season or playoffs.

“Yeah, I mean, I know how to play basketball, so it’s really about being comfortable enough to get out there and feel safe, and as soon as I get to that point I’m going back to the gym,” Paul said.

Sleepwalkers

With the Bulls taking a red eye on Paris on Sunday, still trying to get used to the time change, Donovan was doing his best to make sure everyone was on a better schedule heading into Paris’ game Thursday against the Pistons.

“I just look at what I’ve been through and I don’t even play,” Donovan said. “I was awake [Tuesday] It’s 3:30 or 4 in the morning and I couldn’t get back to sleep. There’s a seven-hour time change and a red-eye flight to contend with. I’d sit there and say it would be hard to categorize everyone in the same boat. But I’m sure there are some guys out there who are physically and sleep a challenge. It’s very different. ”

Go full

Injured striker DeMar DeRozan was a full participant in Wednesday’s training so, barring a right quadriceps relapse in the next 24 hours, he is expected to return to the starting lineup after missing the last three games.

“He’s been through everything [Wednesday]Donovan said. “A lot of it will depend on how he responds [the practice] Because we competed and fought and went up and down and that’s the first we’ve been able to see him do that. ”

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