The last thing Coby White needed was to miss more time, but that is exactly what will happen now that he has entered the NBA’s Health & Safety Protocols.
According to head coach Billy Donovan, White received a positive COVID test and will officially not travel with the team to New York for their matchup with the Knicks on Thursday night.
Coby White tested positive for COVID, per Donovan.
— K.C. Johnson (@KCJHoop) December 1, 2021
Bulls guard Coby White has tested positive for coronavirus, coach Billy Donovan says.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) December 1, 2021
White has appeared in only nine games this season after missing the first 13 due to his recovery from a torn labrum. The eye test was all anyone needed to see this extended missed time made adapting to the Bulls’ new roster difficult for the third-year guard. While White has made a couple of big shots and posted an important 20 points effort against the Orlando Magic last week, he has averaged just 6.4 points on a 34.9 percent clip from the field since his return.
Again, considering all the time he spent on the sideline, White’s slow start was understandable. He deserved more minutes to get comfortable in a new role, but that process will now hit another speed bump as he is likely to miss extended time. When teammates Nikola Vucevic entered protocols last month, he was sidelined for a total of 12 days, missing a total of seven games.
The entire Bulls team is said to be vaccinated, so White should be in a position where he can return early if he registers two negative tests in a 24 hour period before his 10-day isolation is up. With that said, I think our expectation, for now, should be for him to miss a similar amount of time as his starting center.
The good news for Chicago is that, much unlike the Vucevic situation, they have plenty of experience playing without White. While the situation itself is very unfortunate, dealing with his absence should be significantly easier than when Vucevic stepped away.