Bulls coach Donovan: Zach LaVine has ‘his pop’ back

Zach LaVine Billy Donovan Bulls


Zach LaVine and Billy Donovan watch a fight between the Chicago Bulls and the Indiana Pacers.

Undertake with point guard Lonzo Ball Another Knee surgery – one that will likely require a lengthy period of recovery and rehab – the dream of a Chicago Bulls season without injury woes has died on the vine. And Ball isn’t even the only player coming out of a procedure.

Two-time All-Star Zach LaVine also underwent arthroscopic surgery on his left knee in May. And while several months have passed since he went under the knife and the baller has been an active participant in training camp, some Windy City faithful have been understandably concerned about the situation.

Adding to the ball’s seemingly never-ending saga destroying spirits, LaVine happens to be in the process of signing a five-year, $215 million extension. So, yeah – not the guy you want to see with chronic knee problems.

However, according to the latest update from Bulls coach Billy Donovan, things appear to be going in a great direction for LaVine.

Donovan says LaVine had a crack in his crotch

Zach LaVine outlines his expectations for the Bulls season | Unfiltered | NBC Sports ChicagoChicago Bulls All-Star Zach LaVine joined Unfiltered with David Kaplan for an outlook on the 2022-23 NBA season. What are the Chicago Bulls’ expectations for the season? And what are LaVine’s expectations of herself? LaVine talks life as a father, improving his golf game in the offseason, the Bulls’ defensive strategy under Billy Donovan….2022-09-27T00:29:28Z

Donovan couldn’t help but rave about the imposing face LaVine has left at camp so far, not to mention the things he’s actually been able to accomplish on the court.

“The first thing that struck me is that he looks really strong physically,” Donovan said after Friday’s practice session via NBC Sports Chicago. “He’s a good size to me, good strength, he looks really explosive. In the training camp he looks like a different player to me.”

It’s an encouraging development considering how the past few months have been for LaVine. And one that probably bodes well for what he can bring to the table this season.

“Like last year’s training camp, he started great. I think obviously as the season progressed the knee and thumb became an issue,” added Donovan. “But I think physically, when I think about him at the end of last season, where he is now, I think he’s got his athleticism, his bounce and his pop back.”

In his last five regular-season appearances, LaVine averaged just 19.6 points, 3.8 rebounds, and 3.8 assists per contest while shooting a mediocre 43.1% from the field and 31.3% from three-point range.

He also had a few DNPs on the line, one of which came in the Bulls’ ill-fated playoff eliminator.

LaVine was also pleased with his progress

For his part, LaVine noted that he’s doing fine physically at the moment. However, he made no secret of the fact that he had to take it easy in the offseason and is now catching up.

“I’m feeling good,” LaVine said after practice on Saturday. “Of course I’m going to go to training camp this year to pretty much get back into it. It’s the first time I’ve actually had to do this because I’ve been rehab all summer. But I feel really good.

“The training camp was really good for me. This is my first live action. I was actually a little surprised myself at how I felt. I figured I’d have to work my way into it a little more. But I played pretty well.”

https://heavy.com/sports/chicago-bulls/billy-donovan-zach-lavine-pop/ Bulls coach Donovan: Zach LaVine has ‘his pop’ back

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