Bulls star Zach LaVine


Bulls star Zach LaVine

The Chicago Bulls received good and bad news on May 12 from NBA insider Shams Charania.

The bad news is that star shooting guard Zach LaVine will undergo left knee surgery soon. It’s the same knee the two-time All-Star tore his left ACL in.

However, the good news is that LaVine is expected to make a full recovery.

“Sources tell me Bulls star Zach LaVine will undergo a scope procedure on his left knee in the coming weeks,” Charania reported. “He will make a full recovery. The surgery will address a knee issue that was diagnosed in January which LaVine played through all season and gutted out. And although it could have seriously impacted his availability for the season, LaVine wanted to play through the injury, as he made a push to lead the Bulls to their first playoff appearance since 2017 and the first of his career. LaVine is coming off back-to-back All-Star appearances for the Bulls and will be among the most sought-after free agents this summer.”

LaVine initially hurt his left knee on January 14 against the Golden State Warriors. In February, the high-flier had platelet-rich plasma therapy, a cortisone injection and fluid drained from his knee.

However, LaVine’s knee never got back to 100%, which is why the UCLA product will undergo arthroscopic surgery.

What Is Arthroscopic Knee Surgery?

According to Dr. Jonathan Cluett, arthroscopic surgery is a procedure that involves inserting a camera inside the joint. Through other tiny incisions, instruments can be inserted to repair or remove damaged structures.

“Many different surgical procedures that are commonly performed arthroscopically were once performed through the larger incisions,” Cluett wrote. “The advantage of arthroscopy is being able to perform those surgical procedures without damaging normal structures around the joint. By being less invasive, the hope is there will be less pain and a faster recovery.

“However, arthroscopic surgery is still a major surgical procedure, involves risks, and requires appropriate postoperative rehabilitation. It is important that you understand the nature of any surgical procedure being considered, the risks involved, and the postoperative recovery that will be necessary to achieve a successful result.”

LaVine appeared in 67 games this season for the Bulls, who lost to the Milwaukee Bucks in the first round of the 2022 playoffs in five games. The 27-year-old averaged 24.4 points, 4.6 rebounds and 4.5 assists while shooting 47.6% from the field, 38.9% from beyond the arc and 85.3% from the free-throw line.

LaVine becomes an unrestricted free agent this summer. It’s unknown if his knee surgery will impact his free agency.

LaVine Talked About Free Agency During Exit Interview

LaVine openly talked about his unrestricted free agency with Bulls reporters during his exit interview in April. The two-time Slam Dunk champion sounded pretty excited about becoming an unrestricted free agent for the first time in his career.

“I plan to enjoy free agency with what it is as a whole,” LaVine said. “I think you’re going to have to experience A-Z without making any fast decisions. I think that’s something that me and Rich (Paul) get to go through and experience. … I don’t think I’m going to have to be in negotiations. They’re going to have to talk to Rich. For me, I get to sit back and figure it out from that point.”

The Bulls acquired LaVine from the Minnesota Timberwolves on June 22, 2017. In 272 games with Chicago, LaVine is averaging 24.4 points.

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