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John Paxson says Bulls may ‘run out of time’ to play Otto Porter Jr. again this season

Bulls, John Paxson, Otto Porter Jr

Chicago Bulls vice president of basketball operations John Paxson says the franchise may “run out of time” to play small forward Otto Porter Jr. again this season.

Porter is dealing with a shoulder injury and hasn’t played in the Bulls’ previous two games. The swingman won’t play on Saturday against the Utah Jazz either.

The Bulls acquired Porter from the Washington Wizards on Feb. 6. Chicago will finish with one of the worst records in the league this season, so there’s no point to play Porter if he’s not 100 percent.

In 15 games with the Bulls, Porter is averaging 17.5 points, 5.5 rebounds and 2.7 assists per contest while shooting 48.3 percent from the field, 48.8 percent from beyond the arc and 90.6 percent from the free-throw line.

Having Porter go into the offseason healthy is crucial. Porter is part of Chicago’s core, which features Zach LaVine, Lauri Markkanen and Wendell Carter Jr.

The Bulls definitely won the trade with the Wizards. Porter gives Chicago something they haven’t had a long time at the small forward position: a versatile shooter and scorer who can impact the game on both ends of the floor.

After Saturday’s game versus the Jazz, Chicago has eight games left in the season.