Joakim Noah said it’s the left hamstring, Derrick Rose said it was Noah’s left knee and Tom Thibodeau described it as “tendinitis … I think it’s part of the hamstring that’s connected [to the knee].’’
Whatever it is, Noah won’t be on the court tonight, as the Bulls host the Atlanta Hawks in the last regular-season game and with the No. 3 seed hanging in the balance.
“I think he’ll be fine,’’ Thibodeau said of Noah, when asked if he will now enter playoff basketball back under minutes restrictions. “We’ll leave it at that.’’
All that mattered to Thibodeau was all signs pointed to Noah being ready for Game 1, whether it’s against Milwaukee or Washington.
“Yeah, I mean, it’s we’ll see,’’ Thibodeau said. “I do expect him to play [this weekend]. He said he’s feeling a lot better today. I want it to clear up. I don’t want to read into it too much.’’
Noah was on that same page.
“Just a little hamstring issue,’’ Noah said. “I’ve just got to be careful. I’m just doing all the treatment, getting as healthy as possible.’’
Asked if he could play tonight if it was a playoff game, Noah responded, “
“It’s not the playoffs tonight,’’ Noah said. “It’s not. That’s our reality. So we’re just trying to stay focused. I’m really excited about this year.’’
The Bulls will also be without Kirk Hinrich, who is still working his way back from a hyper-extended knee.