Report: ‘Good Chance’ Bulls’ Zach LaVine Won’t Play Before NBA Trade Deadline

Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls, Jalen Green, Houston Rockets, Dejounte Murray, Atlanta Hawks, NBA trade rumors
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

According to NBA insider Joe Cowley of The Chicago Sun-Times, there’s a “good chance” Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine won’t play before the trade deadline, which is on February 8.

LaVine sprained his right ankle against the Toronto Raptors on January 18. According to NBA insider Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium, LaVine suffered “worse than just a grade one” ankle sprain.

LaVine’s latest injury complicates things for the Bulls, who have been trying to trade the two-time All-Star for the past few months. Since Chicago has played better without LaVine in the lineup, LaVine’s trade market is virtually non-existent.

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls Updates

However, according to NBA insider K.C. Johnson of NBC Sports Chicago, the Bulls are still seeking a strong return in a LaVine trade.

“To this point, a source said, the Bulls haven’t moved off their stance of seeking a strong return for LaVine,” Johnson wrote. “In other words, at least as of recently, the Bulls aren’t looking to move LaVine simply as a cost-saving move or in ‘addition by subtraction’ thinking.”

LaVine is averaging 19.5 points, 5.2 rebounds, 3.9 assists, 0.8 steals and 0.3 blocks this season while shooting 45.2% from the field, 34.9% from 3 and 85.4% from the free-throw line. He’s making $40.1 million.

A two-time Slam Dunk Contest champion, LaVine signed a five-year, $215 million contract with the Bulls in July 2022. He’ll make $43 million next season and $45 million in 2025-26.

According to NBA insider James L. Edwards III of The Athletic, the Bulls and Detroit Pistons have discussed a LaVine trade. LaVine, who played college basketball at UCLA, has career averages of 20.5 points, 4.1 rebounds, 3.9 assists, 0.9 steals and 0.3 blocks with the Minnesota Timberwolves and Bulls.

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls Updates

The Los Angeles Lakers don’t plan to trade for LaVine, sources told NBA Analysis Network, even though LaVine, LeBron James and Anthony Davis share the same agent (Rich Paul of Klutch Sports Group). The New York Knicks are also not interested in pursuing a LaVine trade.

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