Bulls’ Coby White positive for COVID-19, will miss multiple games – NBC Chicago
White tests positive for COVID-19, only to miss several games that originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago
Coby White’s difficult 2021-22 season continued when, according to Chicago Bulls coach Billy Donovan, the third-year goaltender tested positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday morning.
White, who has remained behind as the Bulls departed on a two-game trip against the Knicks and Nets, will miss at least 10 days and will need to produce two negative tests before being allowed for heart screening. Once that was over, he would be allowed to play.
Nikola Vučević recently missed seven games following his positive test and a similar routine.
The bulls are fully vaccinated. Like all teams, they were undergoing daily testing due to the recent Thanksgiving holiday. Now that these tests have produced at least one positive result, Donovan said players and coaches will continue with daily testing.
“I feel bad for Coby just because he just recovered from a shoulder injury,” Donovan said. “He’s trying to find his way back and now he has another period where he won’t be able to do anything physically until the league allows him to have heart tests – however long it takes.”
White has played nine games since returning from shoulder surgery in the offseason to repair a torn labrum. He is averaging 6.1 points and shooting just 22.6% over a 3-point range.
Since Donovan spoke to reporters shortly after learning of White’s test result, he said he and his coaching staff were planning to tackle rotation issues on the flight to New York. Donovan said he trusted rookie Ayo Dosunmu, who remained in the rotation even after White returned, and other reserves who worked to stay ready. Troy Brown Jr. is the candidate most likely to receive minutes.
The Bulls are also dealing with a sick Zach LaVine, whom Donovan praised for battling an illness unrelated to COVID in Monday’s victory over the Hornets. LaVine stayed home and away from the squad on Tuesday as the players attended film sessions and trained individually. LaVine attended practice on Wednesday but did not participate.
Donovan said he expected LaVine to play against the Knicks on Thursday.
“I think this game (Monday) was quite honestly wasting him a lot of time,” said Donovan. “I’m just trying to get back to the game. [Tuesday] for us it was a lighter day in terms of film and we let him stay home and rest. [Wednesday], he came in and looked. But I think the doctor felt it was good to give her another day to try to recover.
The league recently recommended booster shots for all players and coaches. Donovan confirmed these are available for the team, but said it was a personal choice.
“I think when people were getting vaccinated, it was thought that you might not be able to catch COVID. And obviously that’s not the case, ”Donovan said. “And I think we’re all learning more and more about the virus and what’s going on. And there’s a new variant that’s here right now. I don’t know how this affects us or how well the vaccinations you have had in the past protect you from this.
“But I think it’s hard for medicine and vaccination, people still get it. So the feeling is that the symptoms might not be as severe if you are not vaccinated. But you just have to be careful and try to do the best job you can. But I think everyone in the league, not just us, is faced with this. You’re going to have situations where your team is going to lose guys.
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