After practicing Monday, Carlos Boozer said whether or not he plays on Wednesday against the Magic at the United Center is up to him, based on "pain and swelling" in his right hand.
Last week, K.C. Johnson reported there was "quiet optimism" that Carlos Boozer would make his Bulls debut on Wednesday against the Orlando Magic at the United Center.
The decision whether or not to be activated to play Wednesday is Boozer's, K.C. reported Monday at the Chicago Tribune, adding it would be dependent on the pain he's feeling and the swelling:
Boozer said it was too early to know if he'll
make his game debut Wednesday against the Magic, although several people
associated with the team are privately optimistic that will happen.
Boozer said the decision is up to him.
"I think I'll know with how it reacts," he said. "If the pain and the swelling isn't there, I'll play."
"I'm very comfortable with the offense," Boozer said.
It's been eight weeks since Boozer fractured his right fifth metacarpal
in a 'domestic accident'. He's been practicing with a glove-like
"protective device," K.C. added, that "covers the right pinky and ring
fingers and extends to the wrist."
Boozer has said he doesn't like the device, but all implications have
been that whatever can get him on the court will get him there.
The optimism deserved to this development is based on the decision
whether or not to play being out of the hands of trainers, doctors, etc.
It means that what can be seen is healed enough to be effective if he's
personally comfortable with any degree of pain that continues to be
Even if Boozer can't be 80-90% effective, the team can confidently play with a ten-man rotation. Joakim Noah and Taj Gibson have recent histories of foot problems and will need to be paced better. Boozer turns the current three-man frontcourt rotation of Noah, Taj, and Omer Asik to a four-man with Taj also to come off the bench.
The addition of John Lucas III put 14 players on the Bulls roster. The inactive players will likely be Lucas and Kurt Thomas upon Boozer's return with James Johnson and Brian Scalabrine on the bench, but still out of the rotation.
UPDATE: Boozer wouldn't commit to playing Wednesday on "The Waddle & Silvy Show" at ESPN 1000, but said he hopes to debut this week.
"It may or may not be [Wednesday]," Boozer said. "I'm expecting
hopefully this week, maybe this weekend but we'll see. I don't want to
say I'm playing [Wednesday] and then not be able to play."
Listen to the full interview here.