Joakim Noah has needed to rehabilitate multiple injuries the past two seasons with his current team, the Bulls. And he'll need to do the same with his new squad, the French national team, according to K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune.
Noah, who missed 34 games last season, has returned to Chicago after French basketball officials sent him home to rehab his right ankle, which sidelined him for three games late in the regular-season.
The French basketball federation released a statement saying, "In an act of transparency, the FFBB (France's basketball federation) sent the medical reports to his club and his agent."
Noah will be joined in Chicago by a representative sent by the French basketball federation "to coordinate the rehabilitation program of the player in accordance with his agent."
It seems Noah -- whose shoe sponsor is Le Coq Sportif, a French company -- will miss a good chunk of France's training camp, which began on Wednesday. However, unless he has a major setback, don't expect him to miss games. He'll have a month-plus to rehab until competition, as France opens up play on August 31 against Latvia.
Of course, due to the lockout, the Bulls are unable to comment on Noah (or any other player).
After missing just 10 games in his first two seasons in the NBA, the 6-foot-11 center has missed 52 games the last two seasons. Due to plantar fasciitis last offseason, he declined an invitation to play with France last summer, but seems determined to do so this time around -- nagging injuries or not.
Noah's commitments lie with the Bulls, the team that writes his pay checks. Because of his history of injuries, and gaining reputation as an oft-injured player, he has to rehab, train and play (once he comes back from rehab) smart. One tweak here, sprain there, could be costly for him and the Bulls.
The good news for Noah: The FFBB announced on Tuesday that it has obtained insurance for its players. Which is critical, because the NBA doesn't insure its players during work stoppage.
Along with being ready for the French team, Noah's main goal this offseason should be to regain 100 percent health. Clearly, he doesn't have it right now.
If an extended lockout benefits a Bull, it has got to be Noah.