Bulls without Hutchison after positive COVID test


Chicago Bulls forward Chandler Hutchison tested positive for COVID-19, according to coach Billy Donovan.

He remains in Washington, D.C., where the Bulls beat the Wizards on Thursday. The Bulls took on the Bucks in Milwaukee on Friday night, losing 126-96.

“He’s going through the NBA safety and protocols,” Donovan confirmed.

Hutchison’s teammates Lauri Markkanen, Ryan Arcidiacono and Tomas Satoransky also missed Friday’s game while under the league’s health and safety protocols. The trio is back in Chicago.

Donovan originally announced Thursday that the Bulls would be without four players in Washington, and that those players wouldn’t travel to Milwaukee, due to the NBA’s health and safety protocols. Donovan later announced Hutchison’s positive test on Friday after receiving permission from the Bulls organization.

“There’s just a lot of inconveniences to be quite honest with you, and it’s just kind of the way of the world,” Donovan said. “It’s a totally different environment. I really didn’t know what to expect when I took the job, but I really didn’t know what to expect going into Orlando into the bubble.”

Chicago has already had to contend with the coronavirus early in the 2020-21 season, with forward Noah Vonleh testing positive in the preseason before being waived, Satoransky missing time in December due to the mandated nine-day quarantine for being a close contact to Vonleh, and forward Luke Kornet and two-way guard Devon Dotson quarantining during the preseason with “excused absences.” Garrett Temple also said he tested positive in November.

Donovan said four members of the Bulls coaching staff missed the game against the Indiana Pacers on Dec. 26, but returned for the following game against the Golden State Warriors.

“It’s challenging. Like I said, it’s not normal,” Bulls point guard Coby White said. “Obviously, it’s not normal, but we knew from the jump, this is how it’s gonna go. COVID is real and we know, no matter who you are, it affects everyone. So, you can’t help what’s going on. You can get it any way possible, so you can’t put the blame on that. It’s just adapting.”

Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer and star Giannis Antetokounmpo see the latest Bulls situation as a reminder to stay safe amid a challenging season.

“We’ve seen a few teams have to deal with multiple players being held out for safety and protocol procedures and each time you see that, I guess you’re first probably mindful that it’s not your team and your group,” Budenholzer said. “It just reminds you to stay diligent. The league has always taken our health and safety with a real priority and it’s gonna continue to make that paramount to the success of the season and make sure that nothing serious happens to any team or any player.”

Added Antetokounmpo: “You cannot force us to stay in a room, but at the end of the day if you go out, it’s on your own risk. You’ve gotta be smart enough to take care of yourself because at the end of the day it doesn’t just affect you. It affects us as a team and it affects our families also, so we’ve got to keep one another accountable. It’s a real thing, but we’re doing the right thing. I think the league is doing the right thing. Hopefully in one month, two months, three months, it can go back to normal and we can look at this COVID-19 and put it in the past.”



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