Chicago Bulls' Mirotic sits out with persistent stomach virus

                                                                                                                                                                                                   
  • Houston Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni yells at the officials during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Golden State Warriors Thursday, Jan. 4, 2018, in Houston.

    Houston Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni yells at the officials during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Golden State Warriors Thursday, Jan. 4, 2018, in Houston.

 
 
Updated 1/8/2018 9:46 PM

There were reports Nikola Mirotic vomited in the locker room after Friday's victory in Dallas, but then he played the following night at Indiana.

By Monday, Mirotic was sick again and he sat out against Houston. Coach Fred Hoiberg described Mirotic's journey with the stomach virus.

 

"He felt much better (Saturday), so the staff determined he was good to go," Hoiberg said. "He was able to eat before that game and had good energy. After the game (he) got sick again and then has had trouble keeping food down since.

"He's feeling a little better. Hopefully he will be able to get some rest and stay hydrated tonight and get back on schedule tomorrow."

Mirotic has cooled off a bit since his hot start, but he's still the Chicago Bulls' top scorer at 17.4 points per game and is shooting 46.5 percent from 3-point range.

"Niko's obviously been playing as well as anybody on our roster since he's been back," Hoiberg said. "You look at his on-off splits, he's the most important guy on our team right now when you look at the advanced analytics."

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Hoiberg adopts offense:

Before Monday's game, coach Fred Hoiberg expressed his admiration for Houston coach Mike D'Antoni's fast-paced offense, which obviously Hoiberg has tried to emulate to an extent.

"I did try to model a lot of my system after the way he plays," Hoiberg said of D'Antoni. "Shoot rim 2s and obviously a lot of 3s; a lot of those in transition. He's as good as there is, as creative an offensive mind as there's ever been at this game.

"I do think he changed the way the game was played with the amount of 3-pointers that were shot. You look at their shot distribution, it's a thing of beauty."

Hoiberg was hoping to play for D'Antoni in Phoenix after heart surgery ended his stint with Minnesota, but Hoiberg decided to retire as a player rather than take the risk.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Redemption for D'Antoni:

Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni was reminded before the game that before his revolutionary run in Phoenix, he had a miserable turn coaching the Denver Nuggets. Does he feel vindicated now that his high-scoring style dominates the NBA?

"It made me feel better. I didn't want to be a laughingstock," said D'Antoni, who went 14-36 at Denver during the lockout season of 1999. "I didn't want to do something that was completely wrong. The vindication comes in that I'm still working."

Lavine news on hold:

The Bulls met Monday, as promised, to decide on the best day for Zach LaVine to make his return from a torn ACL in his left knee. The team said executive vice president John Paxson will address the topic on Tuesday at the Advocate Center.

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