Rajon Rondo will miss tonight’s must-win game against the 76ers

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PHILADELPHIA – When Jimmy Butler was told that he’s been put on triple-double alert for tonight’s game against Philadelphia, of course he smiled.

Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg announced after the Thursday shootaround that veteran point guard Rajon Rondo would be sidelined at least one game after an MRI showed a sprained right wrist, which means Jerian Grant would get the start, but Butler would take over Rondo’s role of distributor.

A role he has become very familiar with the past few seasons.

“Yeah, I feel like I’ve gotta do a little bit more,’’ Butler said with Rondo sidelined. “Continue to play like I’ve been playing. Shoot the ball when you’re open, pass when you’re not. Keep it simple, and try and make everybody else’s job a little bit easier.

“I mean, hell, Rondo used to get people wide-open shots. Hopefully I can do that role right now, get people some wide-open shots, make the right play. I mean sometimes if you’re not open you still gotta shoot it just to see if you’re hitting shots tonight. I believe in that. You never know if you’re going to hit four in a row if you don’t shoot it four times.’’

As for Rondo, there was no timetable on a return, especially considering how handsy he is with the ball and defensively.

“A lot of it is based on feel and with Rajon, he’s got the ball in his hands, flinging passes, there’s still some soreness with all those movements,’’ Hoiberg said of a timetable for his return. “All we know is he’s out.’’

With just four regular-season games left and so much still at stake for a playoff spot, the hope is it’s a quick recovery.

“Just taking it one hour at a time,’’ Rondo said. “It’s a ligament that’s kind of not in the right place right now. It’s causing it to pop a little bit.

“Everything happens for a reason. Control what you can control. That’s how life is.’’


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