Well, on the up side the Bulls are used to playing without Richard Hamilton in the lineup.
And they may be for a while — Rip injured his shoulder in the Bulls win Monday over the Pacers. There are not a lot of details but what Aggrey Sam found out for CSNChicago.com doesn’t make it sound good.
Hamilton wasn’t available for comment after the game, but according to a source familiar with the situation, he left the arena with his right arm in a sling. The same source told CSNChicago.com that Hamilton apparently injured the “top” of his shoulder and at least early on—he’ll be examined Tuesday—there’s little optimism about a quick return.
“He collided and it’s his shoulder,” Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau said afterwards. “He tried to shake it off and at first I thought it might be a stinger, but that wasn’t the case.”
Hamilton has played in just 16 of the Bulls 40 games this season due to injury (averaging 11.3 points per game when he does play, with an unimpressive PER of 12.8). Early in the season he seemed to be fitting in and bringing what the Bulls really needed — another scorer along side Derrick Rose. In his return from injury Hamilton was not really hitting his stride yet but there seemed to be a chemistry building.
And now this.
The Bulls need Hamilton come the playoffs if their dreams of advancing past the Miami Heat and to the NBA finals are to be realized. They need a second scoring option that can draw the attention of the defense besides Rose. Hamilton — with his relentless work off the ball — seemed to be just what the doctor ordered.
Well, if he could stay out of the doctor’s office. PBT will update you with the details of how long he will be out as soon as we know.