On Saturday night, The Chicago Bulls will hit the court for the first time in three days when they take on the Heat in South Beach. However, exactly which players will actually be available to participate in the contest is anyone’s guess.

On Thursday, forward Derrick Jones Jr. became the fourth Bulls player to enter health and safety protocols. He joined DeMar DeRozan, Coby White, Javonte Green and Matt Thomas. Now, two more players have reportedly entered protocols, as the Bulls continue to redefine what a COVID-19 outbreak can be during the 2021-22 NBA season.

As reported KC Johnson, rookie wing Ayo Dosunmu and veteran forward Stanley Johnson have been put into protocols as well. Johnson did note, though, that Alex Caruso (hamstring) would be available to play against the Heat.

The crazy thing about Johnson’s brush with Covid is that he was signed by the Bulls using a hardship exception that was triggered by the outbreak. Now, before he could even play a game for Chicago, he finds himself on “the list.”

As it stands, the team has more than enough players to play against the Heat. Zach LaVine, Nikola Vucevic, Lonzo Ball, Troy Brown Jr., Tony Bradley, Alize Johnson, Marko Simonovic, Caruso and McKinnie — as well as two-way players Devon Dotson and Tyler Cook — should all be ready to go for the game.

Still, this seemingly endless bout with the coronavirus threatens to act as a roadblock for what has been a resurgent campaign in Chicago thus far. Entering the Heat game, the Bulls sit in second place in the Eastern Conference at 17-9, just one game behind the No. 1 Brooklyn Nets.

Anirban Biswas

Anirban Biswas has been writing for Thirsty For News since 2021 and has been covering various topics such as entertainment, music, and pop culture. In his free time, Anirban enjoys playing guitar, composing music and exploring new places.

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