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Bulls’ Jabari Parker intends to play vs. Hornets despite respiratory infection

Jabari Parker, Bulls

Chicago Bulls small forward Jabari Parker intends to play against the Charlotte Hornets Wednesday night despite dealing with an upper respiratory infection, according to K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune.

Parker missed the morning shootaround, but reports before the game suggest that the 23-year-old forward is expected to play the game. Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg, meanwhile, told reporters pregame that Parker will meet with team doctors before tip-off, per K.C. Johnson.

Parker, however, emphasized his desire to play despite being doubtful due to his health issue.

Chicago has started the season 0-3. In those three losses, Parker has averaged 16.0 points, 4.7 rebounds and an assist while shooting 46.5 percent from the field, 50.0 percent from beyond the arc and 60.0 percent from the free-throw line.

A native of Chicago, Jabari Parker signed a two-year, $40 million deal with the Bulls in July after the Milwaukee Bucks rescinded their qualifying offer on him. The second year of Parker’s contract with Chicago is a team option, essentially giving Parker a one-year tryout to prove he can stay healthy and be productive at the small forward position. Parker has suffered two ACL tears in his young career since being selected out of Duke as the No. 2 overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft.

Parker has been coming off the Bulls’ bench. Hoiberg says he likes how Parker has played with the second unit. His defense has been so-so, an area Parker has to improve in if he wants to get minutes late in games.