CHICAGO (AP) -Minnesota Timberwolves point guard Randy Foye was set to return Tuesday against the Chicago Bulls after missing the first 43 games because of a stress reaction in his left kneecap.
``It feels great,'' Foye said before the game. ``Just to get back out there is going to be fun for me.''
Foye was not listed in the starting lineup, and coach Randy Wittman said his minutes will be limited ``until he gets his feet back under him.''
His debut is a boost for a team that is starting to show some progress even though it was a league-worst 8-35 entering the game. The Timberwolves had won three of four, beating Phoenix and losing by one at Boston.
``Hopefully, it will be (a boost),'' Wittman said. ``(He's) another guy who's going to be a piece to this team that we haven't had. He gives us things that we don't have. You hope it is. You hope that's a thing we can use as a good boost.''
An NBA all-rookie team selection last season, Foye is a key figure as the Timberwolves rebuild following an offseason overhaul in which they sent Kevin Garnett to Boston. He averaged 10.1 points, 2.8 assists and 22.9 minutes while playing all 82 games last year.
Foye said he bruised the knee in summer league and continued to play on it, aggravating the condition. He appeared in three preseason games before shutting it down.
He initially expected to miss several weeks, but the injury was slow to heal. He started practicing on a limited basis on Jan. 7 and began participating in all drills about a week ago.
``It'll mean nothing but great things,'' forward Al Jefferson said. ``It's what we've been waiting for all year.''
The Bulls were without their two best players, guard Ben Gordon (sprained right wrist) and forward Luol Deng (left Achilles tendinitis), again along with guard Chris Duhon (sprained left knee) and forward Joe Smith (flu-like symptoms).
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