Chicago Bulls point guard Kirk Hinrich plans to be back in the lineup when the Bulls host the Minnesota Timberwolves in preseason action on Friday night. Hinrich sat out Tuesday's 100-94 win over the Milwaukee Bucks with a sore thumb.
Hinrich has looked rejuvenated so far this preseason after several seasons marred by injury and poor play. He said on Thursday that his thumb is feeling much better and that it should not be a problem going forward.
This Bulls/Wolves matchup comes less than one week after an ugly 82-75 affair between the two teams up in Minnesota that saw Bulls second-year man Jimmy Butler play all 48 minutes. However, the Bulls were without Luol Deng and Richard Hamilton in that game, and things looked much better when they returned to the lineup on Tuesday. Hamilton scored 23 points against the Bucks, bumping his preseason average up to 15.3 points per game.
As for the Wolves, they will begin life without superstar power forward Kevin Love, who broke his right hand on Tuesday. With Love out of the lineup, the Wolves will look for Derrick Williams to step up. The No. 2 overall pick in the 2011 NBA Draft showed some potential as a rookie, but he also struggled plenty.
Tip-off for Bulls/Wolves is at 7:00 p.m. CT. The game will be broadcast on CSN Chicago.