By Cody Westerlund–
CHICAGO (CBS) — The Bulls’ point guard competition appears to have been decided by default as it pertains to the regular-season opener on Oct. 19.
Kris Dunn suffered an open dislocation of his left index finger in a 114-101 preseason win against the Bucks at the United Center on Friday night and will be out at least two weeks, coach Fred Hoiberg said. An open dislocation is when the bone protrudes the skin, and Hoiberg added that a tendon of Dunn’s was visible.
“(Trainer) Jeff Tanaka popped it back in place, but with the open wound, it will be at least a couple weeks to get that healed,” Hoiberg said. “So he’ll get that stitched up. Then he’ll have an appointment with our hand specialist (Saturday), and we’ll go from there.”
The injury occurred when Dunn rotated over and attempted to block Sterling Brown’s dunk with just less than nine minutes left in the game. His fingers appeared to bend awkwardly upon contact in mid-air.
Dunn immediately left the court for the locker room with trainers and was still being worked on postgame after Hoiberg and teammates had met the media.
It’s possible Dunn, acquired from the Timberwolves in the Jimmy Butler trade in June, is out longer than two weeks, depending on the hand specialist’s assessment of the dislocation come Saturday.
“I saw enough of it,” teammate Justin Holiday said when asked of his view of Dunn’s injury. “I don’t like seeing it, so I looked away.”
Dunn was battling Jerian Grant for the starting point guard spot. After Grant largely outplayed him in the first two preseason games, Dunn was having a strong game Friday, scoring 11 points on 5-of-7 shooting before exiting in pain.
“Kris was unbelievable tonight,” Hoiberg said. “He really went out there and was a ball hawk on defense, he was getting into the paint, making plays. His shot looked really good on that three he hit on the right wing. He really looked comfortable out there tonight. It’s unfortunate (the injury) happened.”
Grant will now be in line to start at point guard on opening night in Toronto in just less than two weeks. After two strong games, Grant had four points on 1-of-6 shooting and four assists in 23 minutes Friday, his second start in three preseason contests. Fellow point guard Cameron Payne will be out until at least November after having offseason foot surgery.
“Things happen, so next man up,” said Denzel Valentine, who had 15 points and was 5-of-6 on 3-point attempts. “We just got to keep grinding and playing for him.”
Cody Westerlund is a sports editor for CBSChicago.com and covers the Bulls. He’s also the co-host of the @LockedOnBulls podcast, which you can subscribe to on iTunes and Stitcher. Follow him on Twitter @CodyWesterlund.