Zach LaVine has no idea what next season will bring for the Bulls.
The contract extension he signed last summer undoubtedly will keep him in red, black and white for at least the next few seasons. LaVine admittedly likes the team’s direction, but the particulars surrounding the 2019-20 season are anyone’s guess.
That’s why LaVine said Thursday that sitting out the rest of this season — even with a banged-up right knee — isn’t really an option.
“This is basketball,’’ LaVine said. “It’s my favorite thing to do. What else would I be doing right now? If I can play, I’m going to play. I don’t think there’s any reason for me to sit out if I can play. That’s just not who I am. That’s not what I do. It’s going to be good for the team. We can get our chemistry down, continue to play well, build things for next year. I’m not somebody that’s going to sit out. If I’m hurt, there’s no reason to try to risk anything. But if I’m not, I’m going to play.’’
After missing the last two games with a strained right patellar tendon, there was growing speculation Monday that if the knee didn’t react well, LaVine might be shut down for the rest of the season.
Coach Jim Boylen even had plans to broach that topic with vice president of basketball operations John Paxson later that day, but that meeting was put on hold so they could observe LaVine throughout the week.