Zach LaVine

Bulls' Billy Donovan provides update on Zach LaVine

All-Star guard on eve of 3-week mark since team estimated 3-4 weeks of rest for injured foot

Presented by Nationwide Insurance Agent Jeff Vukovich

Wednesday night marks three weeks since the Chicago Bulls estimated that Zach LaVine would need "an additional estimated three to four weeks" to treat his right foot inflammation.

LaVine, who has been doing light shooting and straight-ahead running for awhile, began light cutting on Tuesday. Following Wednesday's practice at the Advocate Center, coach Billy Donovan said LaVine responded to that initial test well.

"I think there’s going to be a steady increase on what he’s doing," Donovan said. "Everything up to this point that he’s had to go through, he’s done a great job and the medical guys have done a great job. It feels like he’s progressing at the right state."

There is still no firm timetable or target date for LaVine to return to game action.

"Even if he passes that part of it---and I’m not sure how many days of cutting it will be---it’s going to be more loads and more intensity," Donovan said. "A lot of it for him right now is going to be structured, where it’s ‘cut here and cut here.’ The next step after that would be to have him start randomly cutting and moving without it being a directional workout."

If LaVine continues to progress without incident, Donovan also has cited the need for his All-Star guard to have contact workouts before returning to game action. Teams don't scrimmage much at this point of the season, but that work also could come in the form of 5-on-5 with player development coaches and low-minute players.

LaVine last played on Nov. 28 in Boston. He last addressed reporters on Dec. 7, the same day he received a platelet rich plasma injection in his foot. He reiterated his commitment to his teammates and his allegiance to the Bulls until the day he's no longer wearing that uniform.

It's an open secret that the Bulls and LaVine are working to find him a new home in advance of the Feb. 8 trade deadline. And while both sides are motivated to make a deal, the Bulls also have prepared for the scenario in which LaVine returns and trade discussions are tabled until the offseason.

Along those lines, Donovan addressed where he thinks LaVine is mentally. LaVine has been visible at games cheering on teammates.

"I think he’s a lot happier now because at least he can get on the court and run and he can do some shooting and workout," Donovan said. "That’s probably the most frustrating part. These guys are so wired and trained to work out and work on their shooting, work on their game all the time. When that gets taken away from you for a period of time, you want to get back in the gym and start working out.

"He understands there has to be a process that he has to go through to keep ramping up. But he’s been in good spirits."

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