The Chicago Bulls announced Thursday that guard Coby White will be out until at least the latter stages of training camp after undergoing surgery to repair a left shoulder injury he suffered over the weekend.
The team said the injury occurred while White was “engaged in basketball activities away from the team.” After the surgery, which was performed Thursday at Chicago’s Rush University Medical Center, the team said White would be re-evaluated in four months. That would mean an update would come just before the mid-October start of the 2021-22 regular season, which will see the NBA reorient itself to its typical calendar after the past two seasons were thrown off due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
White, 21, is coming off an up-and-down sophomore season in the NBA, having averaged 15.1 points, 4.1 rebounds and 4.8 assists while shooting 41.8 percent from the field and 35.9 percent from 3-point range in 69 games, including 54 starts, after almost exclusively coming off the bench as a rookie.
“It was up-and-down for him this year,” Bulls coach Billy Donovan told reporters in Chicago of White during his end-of-season media availability last month. “But I’ve always said this about him, he’s got great resolve. He’s got resiliency, and he’s got great bounce-back ability. After the trade was over with, I think he kind of found his footing and played really good basketball for us.”
After missing the playoffs, the Bulls will wait to see whether they retain their draft pick — which Chicago traded to the Orlando Magic in March as part of the deal for All-Star center Nikola Vucevic. Chicago, which is currently slotted into the eighth spot in the lottery, will keep its pick if it jumps into the top four spots in the lottery, which is set to take place June 22. Chicago had the fourth pick in last year’s draft, which it used to take Patrick Williams, after having the seventh pick the prior two years, when it took White (2019) and center Wendell Carter Jr. (2018).