NBA

It’s official: Chicago’s Lonzo Ball will now miss most of next season as he undergoes cartilage transplant in left knee

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After weeks of uncertainty over Lonzo Ball’s medical situation, the Chicago team finally gave an update this Thursday announcing the player will undergo yet another surgery on his left knee and has no official return date.

According to ESPN insider Adrian Wojnarowski, the athlete requires an operation for a cartilage transplant, which would keep him out of court for most of the 2023/24 campaign.

The concern surrounding the player goes all the way to even doubt about the point guard’s ability to resume his career as a professional basketball player. The medical staff concluded that only with this procedure “will give him a pathway to play again.”

Ball released a statement for the team to clarify his situation. “My main focus has been on returning to the court and getting to a place where I can rejoin my teammates,” he expressed. “This has been a frustrating process, but I’m confident these next steps are the best path forward.

“The support of my family, friends, fans and medical staff throughout my recovery is what keeps me moving forward. I can’t wait to get back to what I love doing most – playing basketball.”

It’s already been more than a year since the 25-year-old suffered his first injury that started this nightmare. Ever since January 2022 he’s undergone two surgeries, and hasn’t played a single game for his club yet. His latest operation was back in September, as he was scheduled to a reevaluation a month later, but simply kept hurting to this day.

The Bulls Executive VP of Basketball Operation, Artūras Karnišovas, shares all the respect for the young guard, and hopes this will be the end of this sad affair. “I continue to admire Lonzo’s perseverance throughout this journey,” he said. “This has been a long and challenging road for him, and this decision has been a difficult one to make. The organization is behind him, and he has our full support.

“Our training and medical staff continue their commitment to Lonzo’s rehabilitation and to working with him throughout this next phase to ensure his healthy return to basketball.”

Check out the point guard’s best 2021/22 season highlights before he suffered his first injury:

Lonzo first signed with the Bulls before the 2021-22 campaign. Prior to his knee issue, the No. 2 overall draft pick in 2017 was averaging 13.0 points, 5.4 rebounds and 5.1 assists over 35 contests last season.

What should Chicago do now that Lonzo’s off the radar?

The Bulls are currently running out of time for a playoff berth, as they are standing in the Eastern Conference’s 12th position with a 31-37 record. Their hope is that both the Indiana Pacers and the Washington Wizards trample during their final 13 games of regular season, as Chicago is trailling behind them by only one match.

Most of our recommended sport betting sites consider the Illinois side to have fallen to the 24th best odds (+50,000) to win this year’s NBA title, tied in possibilities with the Oklahoma City Thunder.

As they recently signed former Lakers player Pat Beverly from the buyout, they’ll have to rely on their new point guard during the rest of this campaign and beyond, now that Lonzo Ball is out of the picture. Their new signing is averaging 6.3 points, 3.7 rebounds and 2.7 assists after 54 games this championship.

Antonio is a life long sports enthusiast and professional journalist, who shares an obssesive urge to find and dig up the most interesting facts to guide gamblers towards more exciting, yet safe bets. In his own words, ''you can never really know enough about the things you love''.

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