(670 The Score) The Bulls got both good and bad news on the health front Wednesday.
Guard Tomas Satoransky and forward Chandler Hutchison each participated fully in a team practice for the first time since contracting and recovering from COVID-19. Each has been sidelined from game action since Dec. 29.
On the flip side, forward Patrick Williams remains plagued by a hip injury and center Wendell Carter Jr. exited practice and didn’t return after suffering a thigh contusion, coach Billy Donovan said. Williams did some running but didn’t participate in any contact work. It’s unclear if Williams or Carter will be available when the Bulls visit the Hornets on Friday evening.
“I’d say right now the two guys up in the air going forward are Wendell and Patrick, but Sato and Hutch obviously, if they continue on the path they’re on today, they should be available to play on Friday,” Donovan said.
Satoransky has only played in three of the Bulls’ 14 games this season. He also missed a significant portion of the preseason and then the regular-season opener while he was in COVID-19 protocols despite testing negative. So needless to say, Satoransky is relieved both to be back with his team and that his family didn’t contract COVID-19 from him.
“When I knew that I’m positive, it was beyond frustration,” Satoransky said. “It was a difficult moment. I was fine going into the isolation on my own, but I was kind of worried about my family. Fortunately, they all tested negative. So that calmed me down. But mentally, that was the toughest part, just being away from the team for the second time, watching the games, knowing you couldn't help. It also helped that they were playing pretty good. I saw a lot of progress in our play. I didn’t have any serious symptoms, so that definitely helped. But I think mentally that was the toughest time for me.”
Satoransky and Hutchison, who has played in just four games, are in line to return to the Bulls’ second unit Friday. Hutchison’s COVID-19 situation was different from Satoransky’s. Hutchison tested positive before Satoransky, so he had to remain in a Washington D.C. hotel for his initial quarantine period while Satoransky returned to Chicago before testing positive. Hutchison had an assistant on call to bring him whatever he needed at any time, he said of how the isolation process worked.
“Basically a rough flu,” Hutchison said. “It started with a fever, chills at night, things like that. You kind of lose your appetite there. If I had to describe it, it was basically kind of a really tough flu. When you get hit by the flu pretty hard, it was kind of like that.”
Cody Westerlund is a sports editor for 670TheScore.com and covers the Bulls. Follow him on Twitter @CodyWesterlund.