National Basketball Association warns Chicago Bulls about resting healthy players

Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports

Bulls executive vice president John Paxson confirmed the team spoke with the league office in a statement as reported by the Chicago Tribune's K.C. Johnson. Lopez was sitting out his seventh straight game, though coach Fred Hoiberg said both players will start Friday at Detroit.

"No, I don't think so, " Hoiberg said, when asked if this messes with what the Bulls wanted to get done on developmental front the remainder of the year. "Nine or 10 is the most, so we're going to start looking at blocks of games where we'll be having a few guys that haven't been playing much or at all, where they'll have a significant role for us".

Holiday was back in the lineup for Wednesday's game against the Memphis Grizzlies. The NBA has reacted similarly in the past when contenders rest multiple healthy players on the night of a national TV game.

As the talk surrounding tanking reaches a fever pitch around the National Basketball Association, the Bulls have had an ongoing dialogue with the league office regarding the best way to handle the final 19 games of the season.

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The NBA already brought in a "draft lottery" system in 1985 that means the worst team is no longer guaranteed the best pick in the draft in an effort to prevent tanking but finishing low in the standings still stands to improve a team's chances of securing the best college talent.

Teams can't sit healthy players for high-profile, nationally televised games. "After healthy dialogue, the league determined that their situations fall into the "player rest" policy".

The Chicago Bulls have now the league's eighth worst record. "That's still what we're doing".

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