Bulls' Lonzo Ball Says He's 'at a Standstill' in Knee Injury Recovery

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVApril 28, 2022

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - APRIL 05: Lonzo Ball #2 of the Chicago Bulls watches from the bench as teammates take on the Milwaukee Bucks at the United Center on April 05, 2022 in Chicago, Illinois. The Bucks defeated the Bulls 127-106. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
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Chicago Bulls guard Lonzo Ball has not seen his rehab go according to plan after getting knee surgery in January.

The 24-year-old did not return after suffering the initial injury on Jan. 14, but he provided an update Thursday.

"We kind of let it calm down for the last two weeks. I was going at it pretty hard trying to get back as fast as possible," Ball told reporters Thursday. "But like I said, at a standstill. I still have pain. Gotta get that figured out this summer for sure."

The initial timeline expected a return in 6-8 weeks, but his attempts to ramp up to basketball activity did not go well. Now he says he "hopefully" doesn't need another surgery in the offseason.

"I wouldn't want to have another one," Ball said. "But if that's what it takes, then I pretty much have no choice at this point."

The Bulls' season came to an end Wednesday after a first-round loss to the Milwaukee Bucks in just five games.

Ball was productive in his first year with the team when on the court, averaging 13.0 points, 5.4 rebounds, 5.1 assists and 1.8 steals per game. Though he played just 35 games, he ranked fourth on the team in value over replacement player, per Basketball Reference.

Chicago was 27-13 when Ball suffered his injury but finished just 19-23 over the final three months of the season.

"This year, we had a lot of promise I felt like," Ball said. "And we had a lot of goals that I don't think were met, mainly due to a lot of health issues."

The guard remains under contract for another two seasons, plus a player option in 2024-25, with health remaining a concern for the point guard.