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Bulls’ Omer Asik out indefinitely with inflammatory arthritis

The Chicago Bulls announced Saturday that Omer Asik is dealing with inflammatory arthritis. Though the Turkish-born center has been receiving medical treatment for the ailment, the team has ruled him out indefinitely.

The Bulls acquired Asik, now 32 years of age, by way of a trade with the New Orleans Pelicans before last season’s trade deadline. The 7-footer also played for Chicago in the 2010-11 and 2011-12 NBA seasons. He holds career averages of 2.9 points and 4.4 rebounds in 152 games for the Bulls and is set to make roughly $23 million through the 2019-20 season, though only $3 million of his contract is guaranteed in 2019-20.

Asik, who has no set timetable for a return, is coming off a tough season — one in which he played just 18 games. Most of his stats were career lows last season.

The Bulls finished the 2017-18 with a 27-55 overall record, which resulted in a 13th-place finish in the Eastern Conference standings. Chicago is a team that will be looking for improvement in the coming season.

Robin Lopez, rookie Wendell Carter Jr, Bobby Portis and rising Lauri Markkanen will have the main duties in the frontcourt. Cristiano Felicio is also in place for depth, while Jabari Parker can play power forward.

Even when healthy, Asik doesn’t have a role in Chicago.