Shoulder sprain knocks Joakim Noah out of the Bulls lineup

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CHICAGO – It was hard not to see and even hear his pain on Monday night at the United Center.

Joakim Noah walked around the court hunched over grabbing onto his left shoulder which was injured in a collision just seconds before in the fourth quarter of the Bulls’ game with the Nets.

He went immediately to the tunnel with Bulls’ athletic trainers who helped to pop his separated shoulder back into place.

But don’t expect to see the most energetic Bulls’ player back in his spot in the Bulls lineup for at least a bit.

After practice on Tuesday the Bulls said an MRI confirmed that Noah suffered a left shoulder sprain against the Nets and would be re-evaluated in two weeks. From that point it will be determined when Noah may return to the lineup.

Monday’s injury marks another in a long line for the center who has typically struggled with knee ailments in the past. Last season Noah missed 15 games due to injury and this season has been relegated to a bench role.

Still Noah is averaging around 22 minute a game with 4.5 points and 8.8 rebounds a contest. On Saturday night he enjoyed his best game of the season to date as he played 29 minutes and scored 21 points along with 10 rebounds.