Bulls rule out LaVine and Caruso for Game 5 in Milwaukee

MILWAUKEE (AP) — The Chicago Bulls won’t have guards Zach LaVine and Alex Caruso available Wednesday night when they try to keep their season alive in Game 5 of a first-round playoff series with the Milwaukee Bucks.

LaVine is in NBA health and safety protocols while Caruso is in concussion protocols. The Bulls announced Wednesday that neither would play in Game 5.

Both had started each of the first four games in this series.

The defending champion Bucks have a 3-1 lead in the best-of-seven series after winning two lopsided games in Chicago. Milwaukee won 111-81 in Game 3 and 119-95 in Game 4.

LaVine, who earned his second All-Star selection this season, entered health and safety protocols on Tuesday. This is his third time in Protocols; he tested positive for coronavirus in April 2021 and again in December.

The Bulls are 9-6 in games LaVine has missed this season. He averaged 19.3 points, 6 assists and 5.3 rebounds in that series.

Caruso left Game 4 after taking an inadvertent punch to the face from Bucks guard Jevon Carter. He averaged 6.3 points and 4.3 assists in that series, and he earned praise for his defense when the Bulls split the first two games in Milwaukee.

The Bulls are also missing guard Lonzo Ball, who suffered a season-ending knee injury in January. The Bucks are without three-time All-Star forward Khris Middleton with a medial collateral ligament sprain in his left knee and reserve guard George Hill with abdominal strain.

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