UPDATE: Thursday, April 25 at 12:17 p.m. ET by Sam Westmoreland
Noah has returned to the Bulls' lineup, but has still been dealing with the foot ailment that kept him sidelined in the regular season, and hasn't played as many minutes as he did prior to the injury. According to head coach Tom Thibodeau, that status likely won't change for Game 3.
ESPN's Nick Friedell has the details:
Noah doing all right. Thibs expects same amount of minutes. Likely 20-25. DRose officially ruled out.— Nick Friedell (@NickFriedell) April 25, 2013
UPDATE: Saturday, Apr. 20, at 8:04 p.m. ET by Kyle Vassalo
The Bulls have announced that Joakim Noah will be starting in Game 1:
---End of Update---
UPDATE: Monday, Apr. 8, at 2:34 p.m. ET by Brandon Galvin
Disappointing news for Bulls fans as Joakim Noah suffered a setback after recently returning from a foot injury, according to Chicago Tribune's K.C. Johnson.
Thibodeau said Noah suffered setback, likely out vs. Raptors.— K.C Johnson (@KCJHoop) April 8, 2013
---End of update---
UPDATE: Wednesday, March 27 at 7:10 p.m. ET by Ian Hanford
Joakim Noah (foot) out for the Bulls tonight.— Ira Winderman (@IraHeatBeat) March 27, 2013
---End of update---
Noah out vs. Pacers with sore foot. Plantar is back. #Bulls— K.C Johnson (@KCJHoop) March 23, 2013
Noah missed more than two months of the 2010-11 season with the injury, and he's had foot or ankle problems for the past three seasons.
With Taj Gibson and Kirk Hinrich recently returning to the lineup, it seemed the Bulls were finally getting healthy—sans Derrick Rose, of course, whose return is apparently only known by God, per Sports Illustrated.
But now with Noah set to miss at least this game, the Bulls have to be wondering if they will ever see their full complement of players on the court this season.
Is this game crucial for the Bulls' confidence and place in the standings?
Chicago will certainly miss Noah against the Pacers, as Indiana has solidified itself as one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference. The Pacers have handled the Bulls well this season, and they will be looking for a sweep of the season series.
If the Bulls hope to avoid that, they will need Nazr Mohammed to step up in Noah's absence. This is a big game for Chicago as this could be a preview of their first-round playoff series.
The Bulls have lost two games in a row, and they sit just a half game ahead of the Boston Celtics in the sixth spot in the East.
Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau has shown the ability to get the best out of an undermanned squad in the past. He'll have to pull that trick again Saturday night at the United Center.