McDermott and Dunleavy could both be back by next week

SHARE McDermott and Dunleavy could both be back by next week
SHARE McDermott and Dunleavy could both be back by next week

Tom Thibodeau can likely count on one hand how many times this season he’s had a full roster to practice with, all healthy and happy.

Well, at least healthy.

The hope is the Bulls are moving in that direction once again, as the team received good news on both Mike Dunleavy and rookie Doug McDermott on Wednesday.

Dunleavy, who has been nursing a jammed right ankle since he suffered the injury in the New Year’s Day win over the Nuggets, actually fired up some shots after the morning shootaround, with Thibodeau hoping for a return in the next four or five days.

That might have been a bit optimistic, considering Dunleavy said he still couldn’t run on the ankle, but it was progress.

“I’m feeling a little better,’’ Dunleavy said. “Just getting there. It’s definitely been a process. I’m starting to do a little bit more on the court, but I got to work my way up to being able to run so that’s sort of the challenge right now.’’

The veteran small forward had an MRI over the weekend to make sure there was nothing structurally wrong, and it came back clean. The hope is to have him running a bit over the weekend, and then back to practice next week.

“I’m just now past the point of hurting to walk,’’ Dunleavy said. “So I’m more comfortable walking now. I’m not yet to the point I can run without pain.’’

As for McDermott and his right knee, he’s been practicing with the team and going through shootaround, so Thibodeau was guessing “three or four days’’ before a possible return to the court for the first-round pick.

“He’s pretty close,’’ Thibodeau said. “Doing just about everything on the court now. Right now we just want to make sure the next day he’s fine. But he’s pretty close.’’

The Bulls have a back-to-back Friday and Saturday, but McDermott and Dunleavy could each be eyeing up the Monday game in Cleveland.

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