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Charles Barkley has no idea what happened to Bulls’ Lauri Markkanen, says he’s ‘regressed’

Charles Barkley, Lauri Markkanen, Bulls

NBA Hall of Famer Charles Barkley thought Chicago Bulls power forward Lauri Markkanen was going to be the next big thing in the NBA.

However, Markkanen has regressed this season and the Bulls are still putrid as a result:

Markkanen underwent an MRI of his right hip on Jan. 23 in Chicago and it revealed an early stress reaction of his right pelvis. He’s been out for the Bulls ever since.

Markkanen has appeared in 46 games for the Bulls this season. He’s averaging 15.0 points, 6.5 rebounds and 1.5 assists while shooting 42.4 percent from the field, 34.4 percent from beyond the arc and 82.6 percent from the free-throw line.

Markkanen has been fairly inconsistent this season. Before the season started, the Bulls were counting on Markkanen and Zach LaVine to be a lethal dynamic duo in order to lead the team back to the playoffs. Chicago hasn’t made the postseason since 2017, the final year of the Jimmy Butler era.

With Markkanen out, LaVine will have to continue to take his game to the next level on the offensive side of the ball for Chicago to stay afloat and remain alive in the Eastern Conference playoff race. LaVine is putting up 25.3 points per game on the season at the moment.