Joakim Noah Eyes Post-All-Star Return

by February 13, 2011

Good news, Bulls fans: Joakim Noah should be returning right on schedule. He’s already picked out a specific date, and the team’s Noah-Boozer frontcourt will soon be back in tact. ESPN Chicago has it: “Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah is on schedule with his rehabilitation and expects to be back after the All-Star break. Noah is hopeful he will make his return on Feb. 23 against the Toronto Raptors. ‘[I’m] very excited,’ he said before Saturday morning’s shootaround. ‘Just working out. I’ve got some tape on my hand instead of a cast. I can shoot a little bit and get back on the court as soon as I can.’ Noah, who hurt his thumb on Nov. 27 against the Sacramento Kings and had surgery to repair a torn ligament in the thumb on Dec. 16, had the remaining portion of the cast removed during halftime of the Bulls’ game against the Utah Jazz on Wednesday.Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau is happy with the way Noah has responded the rehab process. ‘He’s doing great,’ Thibodeau said. ‘Doing great. [Friday] he went through virtually the entire practice. He’s pain-free; still working a little bit on his timing, which is to be expected. [He’s] getting bumped a little bit. He’s body on body now so that’s really the next phase of his rehab. He’s shooting the ball well from 15, 17 feet. Going through all his post stuff. So he’s coming along very well.'”