Bulls unsure of return date for injured Butler


Chicago Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg is unsure when Jimmy Butler will return from injury as the NBA All-Star guard continues to recover from a left knee strain.

Butler has been sidelined since hurting his knee during Friday's loss to the Denver Nuggets, and Hoiberg ruled the 26-year-old out of Monday's showdown at the Charlotte Hornets.

The Atlanta Hawks are next up on Wednesday before the All-Star break and while Hoiberg cannot highlight a return date, he is hopeful the injury is not long-term.

"Jimmy is receiving treatment back home," Hoiberg said.

"He feels better. We still don't have a timeframe on everything, but the important thing is he's feeling a lot better than he was a couple of days ago. He still has a lot of soreness in there.

"I would doubt he would play Wednesday, but then we'll kind of make a determination from there."

Butler is averaging 22.4 points, 5.2 rebounds, 4.3 assists and 1.7 steals for the Bulls this season.

Hoiberg added: "He's still got a lot of stiffness in it. It was an injury that had a lot of pain associated with that.

"It's just about hopefully continuing to improve every day understanding that there's going to be a lot of soreness involved with this particular injury."