The Bulls have cleared Joakim Noah to play in tonight's game against the Raptors tonight despite worries about a nagging injury in his right hand. The Chicago Tribune is reporting that the team has been considering taking more dramatic steps to deal with the problem.
The Tribune reported late Tuesday that management has talked about sitting Noah since his injury isn't healing. Surgery hasn't been ruled out but would be a last resort.
Part of the reason for those discussions might be that the injury is more serious than the team is letting on right. ESPNChicago is reporting that Noah might have ligament damage in the thumb and is expected to be re-evaluated Thursday. Surgery would sideline Noah, whose been averaging 14.2 points and 11.7 boards a game, for at least eight weeks.
SB Nation Chicago, though, notes that all won't be lost for the Bulls if Noah has to sit -- as long as it isn't for too long.
Fortunately, with Carlos Boozer back and in midseason form, Noah's minutes could be limited if necessary, or he could even miss a couple of games -- including tonight, the Bulls have four straight games against teams with losing records, including the woeful Clippers (5-20) and the pathetic Wizards (6-17), both at home.