Rip Hamilton's return 'a ways to go'

Updated: March 9, 2012, 3:40 AM ET
By Nick Friedell | ESPNChicago.com

CHICAGO -- Chicago Bulls guards Richard Hamilton and C.J. Watson both will miss Thursday's game vs. the Orlando Magic.

Pregame quotes from Tom Thibodeau indicated Hamilton's return is not eminent.

"They're feeling better," Thibodeau said of the hobbled guards. "Still day-to-day. C.J.'s getting a little closer. Rip still has a ways to go."

Hamilton has missed all but 16 of the Bulls' 41 games. He suffered his latest malady, a sprained shoulder, in the opening minutes of Chicago's win over the Indiana Pacers on Monday night.

Watson's season has also been hindered, at times, by nagging injuries. Chicago's most reliable scorer off the bench, Watson has been out since Sunday with a sprained left ankle. He is wearing a walking boot and admitted on Wednesday morning that he will come back on Saturday against the Utah Jazz at the earliest.

Nick Friedell | email

Chicago Bulls beat reporter
Nick Friedell is the Chicago Bulls beat reporter for ESPN Chicago. Friedell is a graduate of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University and joined ESPNChicago.com for its launch in April 2009.

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