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Bulls notebook: Kirk Hinrich sidelined by knee injury

Chicago Bulls' Carlos Boozer (5) Philadelphi76ers' Lavoy Allen (50) battle for rebound first half an NBA basketball game Wednesday Dec.

Chicago Bulls' Carlos Boozer (5) and Philadelphia 76ers' Lavoy Allen (50) battle for a rebound in the first half of an NBA basketball game, Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2012, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

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Updated: December 12, 2012 11:05PM



PHILADELPHIA — Point guard Kirk Hinrich is running out of body parts to hurt.An hour before the game Wednesday against the 76ers at the Wells Fargo Center, Hinrich tried to give his latest injury a go, but he was shut down for the night, and

Nate Robinson started in his place.“Banged up his [left] knee [Tuesday],’’ coach

Tom Thibodeau said.

Thibodeau said it wasn’t believed to be serious.

Hinrich already had been sidelined with hip, thumb, groin and elbow injuries.

And it’s not like he has playing heavy minutes (27.2 per game).

So coming up with a plan to protect Hinrich moving forward really isn’t an option.

“I mean he’s not a big minutes guy right now,’’ Thibodeau said. “That’s part of the league. You’re going to get banged up, and when one guy goes down, the next guy has to step up. We’ve been in this situation before. In the Boston game [Nov. 12], Nate started, and

Marquis [ Teague ] came in and did a very good job. We have a lot of confidence in his ability.’’

More woes

Hinrich wasn’t the only injury concern. There’s still the matter of shooting guard Rip Hamilton’s torn left plantar fascia.

Hamilton has missed six games with the injury as it nears the two-week point. Hamilton said he was told by doctors that it could be a month, but the hope was one to two weeks.

“Just got to be patient,’’ Thibodeau said of a return date. “He’s doing more and more each day, still not ready. Hopefully it will be soon.’’

Emergency plan

With the backcourt so thin, Teague saw extended playing time against the 76ers for the first time since Nov. 12. So who’s the emergency point guard behind Robinson and Teague?

Marco Belinelli said it’s him. The hope is that it doesn’t get to that.



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