Bulls shut down Lauri Markkanen for season after incident of ‘rapid heart rate’

Associated Press
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After the Bulls’ loss to the Raptors on Tuesday night, big man Lauri Markkanen spent the night in a Toronto hospital for what the team termed “extreme fatigue.” While he caught up to the Bulls Wednesday night in Chicago and asked to play against Portland, Markkanen was held out of the game.

Now he is being shut down for the season, the team announced Wednesday night. From the official press release:

Lauri Markkanen has been undergoing a series of tests to determine the cause of an episode of a rapid heart rate and fatigue during the game in Toronto on March 26. At this point all testing has been normal, but as a precaution, the medical team has recommended additional testing over the next 10-14 days. Markkanen will not return for the remainder of the season.

The Bulls have just six games remaining after tonight, so being cautious makes sense.

Chicago has already shut down Wendell Carter Jr. for the season and have Zach LaVine (thigh), Otto Porter (shoulder) and Kris Dunn all out as well.

For Bulls fans rooting for GarPax to drive the tank the rest of the season…

The Bulls have the fourth worst record in the NBA. The teams with the three worst records each have the best chance (still just 14 percent under the new lottery odds) of landing the top pick and the chance to select Zion Williamson. As it stands now the Bulls have a 12.5 percent chance. Chicago would need to “make up” 1.5 games (one in the loss column) on Cleveland to have one of the three worst records.