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‘Explosive’ Zach LaVine having an effect on Windy City Bulls

Windy City Bulls coach Charlie Henry has good news about Zach LaVine. 

“He looks good. He definitely looks good,” Henry told the Sun-Times. “He has his athleticism really back. Definitely looks explosive out there. Looks like he’s moving really well.”

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LaVine, who’s in the final stages of his recovery from a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee suffered in February, practiced this week with the Bulls’ G League affiliate. Henry said LaVine took contact and adjusted well to the live portions of practice and was a positive influence on the young players. 

Zach LaVine, seen during Bulls media day, is practicing with the Windy City Bulls. | AP

“He’s really been good for our young guys, to see his approach and how hard he works and the seriousness he brings to his job,” Henry said.

Thanks to the Windy City Bulls’ schedule — they last played Saturday and won’t play again until Friday in Fort Wayne — they’ve been able to string hard practices together. LaVine has been a part of those sessions.

He also challenged his temporary teammates.

“It’s a great experience for our guys,” Henry said. “They love getting a chance to measure themselves against a really good, young NBA player every day. It’s all positive on their end.”

Henry said the Windy City players can benefit from LaVine’s focused approach and the kind of teammate he is, even though he won’t be a long-term teammate. 

“We’re part of the family, but they’re not his direct teammates, with the exception of [two-way players Antonio Blakeney and Ryan Arcidiacono],” Henry said. “He’s just been a really positive contributor as far as creating an environment, and he’s been really positive with our guys.”

Having LaVine this week hasn’t changed things too much for Henry, even though he and Windy City realize how important their short-term player is to the future of the organization. 

“The mindset doesn’t really change a whole lot,” Henry said. “I’m focused on our Windy City Bulls and trying to get us better every day. For the past week or so, Zach’s been a part of that, so now you’re focused on just trying to coach him and trying to get him better just like you would any of your guys.

“The approach hasn’t really changed with Zach at practice. He’s just been a part of it, and he’s been a great guy to have around.” 

Brian leaves Red Stars

The Red Stars announced that midfielder Morgan Brian has left the team for French club Olympique Lyonnais. Brian, whom the Red Stars acquired in August, has made 69 appearances for the U.S. women’s national team and was part of the 2015 World Cup champions.

Follow me on Twitter @BrianSandalow.