Bulls' Zach LaVine Calls Out NBA Healthy and Safety Protocols: 'I'm Good'

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistApril 28, 2021

Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine plays against the Minnesota Timberwolves during an NBA basketball game, Sunday, April 11, 2021, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Andy Clayton-King)
Andy Clayton-King/Associated Press

Zach LaVine is tired of missing games because of the league's health and safety protocols.

The Chicago Bulls star said Wednesday the protocols are "for the BIRDS" as he continues to miss time while his team fights for a playoff spot:

Zach LaVine @ZachLaVine

These protocols are for the BIRDS I’m good....

Shams Charania of Stadium and The Athletic reported April 15 that LaVine was expected to miss at least 10-14 days.

The NBA put the protocols in place amid the COVID-19 pandemic with restrictions for anyone who tests positive or comes in close contact with someone who does.

That LaVine said he is "good" suggests he is healthy, but he has not played since Chicago's loss to the Orlando Magic on April 14. His absence has been significant for the Bulls, as he is the team's best player and in the midst of a career season.

LaVine is averaging 27.5 points, 5.1 assists and 5.1 rebounds per game with 50.6 percent shooting from the field and 41.6 percent shooting from three-point range. He also earned his first All-Star nod this season.

To Chicago's credit, it hasn't fallen apart without him.

Behind trade deadline acquisition Nikola Vucevic and Coby White, the team is 4-3 without LaVine but is still one game behind the Washington Wizards in the race for the final spot in the Eastern Conference play-in tournament. That is largely because Washington has caught fire and is 10-2 since April 7.

The Bulls have 11 games remaining, including a contest against the New York Knicks on Wednesday, and may need LaVine back to catch the red-hot Wizards.