NBA Rumors: There's growing buzz Lonzo Ball will play next season for Chicago Bulls

Lonzo Ball could be in line to make a return next season for the Chicago Bulls.
Golden State Warriors v Chicago Bulls
Golden State Warriors v Chicago Bulls / Stacy Revere/GettyImages

NBA Rumors: There seems to be a growing buzz that Lonzo Ball will play next season for the Chicago Bulls.

Three offseasons ago, the Chicago Bulls made the decision to pivot toward a win-now build. The foundational parts of that decision revolved around the acquisitions of Lonzo Ball and DeMar DeRozan. While DeRozan has proven to be a great investment, the same can't be said about Ball. Unfortunately, for the Bulls, an injury midway through year one of the experiment, Ball suffered a knee injury that forced him to miss the next two seasons.

Even though Ball hasn't played for the Bulls since 2022, there's hope that could change after this year. According to a recent report, there's a growing buzz and some optimism that Ball will be able to return next season for the Bulls.

Can Lonzo Ball pick up where he left off before injury?

Ball last played for the Bulls during the 2021-22 NBA season in which he was averaging 13 points, five rebounds, and five assists per game on a career-high 42 percent shooting from the field and 42 percent shooting from 3-point range. His season ended abruptly due to a knee injury. Ball was supposed to be back at some point toward the end of last season but it's been two-plus years and he still has not played again for the Bulls.

Because of that, it's natural to be a bit hesitant on this report. In a perfect world, Ball would make a return next season for the Bulls and salvage his career. Still at just 26 years old, it would be truly unfortunate if he wasn't able to resume his NBA career. However, it's one of those things where you have to play the wait-and-see approach.

Even if Ball is able to return next season, he's likely going to be on a minute's restriction and is going to be slowly brought on. In that situation, it's hard to envision Ball looking anything like the player he was before the injury. But maybe Ball can buck the trend. Maybe he can pick up where he left off with the Bulls before missing two years due to a mysterious injury.

Heading into next season, the Bulls should have no expectations for Ball. If he's able to return, that would have to be considered a plus. But Chicago shouldn't be building a team around that premise.

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