Tyrus Thomas is scheduled to return to full contact practice on Sunday and could return to game action as soon as next Saturday against the New Orleans Hornets.
With their busy schedule and limited bodies because of injury, the Bulls won't have a regular practice session, but likely will match Thomas against rookies James Johnson and Taj Gibson and other bench players.
"Maybe a little two-on-two and see how he feels," coach Vinny Del Negro said of Thomas. "He's been doing some non-contact shooting stuff and moving around, but some contact and see how he feels. After that I'll have a better gauge of what we're thinking."
The Bulls play Monday and Tuesday, but it's unlikely Thomas - who's been sidelined with a fracture left forearm for six weeks - will play in either game.
"I don't think so," Del Negro said. "I probably wouldn't want to do that even if he feels great tomorrow just because he hasn't practiced. I want to make sure that's healed up, let him get hit a few times, let him be fatigued a little bit and let's be smart about it.
"In a perfect world, would I like that? Of course, but it's a long season and after Monday and Tuesday we have a few days before we play the day after Christmas, so that'll give him a couple of practices and just kind of get the soreness out and get him some conditioning."