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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Bulls Lose Pippen to Surgery

CHICAGO -- The Chicago Bulls will begin defense of their NBA title without Scottie Pippen after the All-Star forward underwent surgery on his ailing left foot that will keep him out of action for two to three months, the team said.

Bulls general manager Jerry Krause said Tuesday that Pippen flew to New York on Monday for the surgery, which was performed on the second toe on Pippen's left foot.

"We're sorry to lose Scottie," Krause told WMVP Radio in Chicago. "We're gonna lose him for the next two months, at least. It's going to be a two-to-three month thing."

Krause said Pippen returned to Chicago on Tuesday and would begin rehabilitation later in the week.

"This is a blow to us, but hopefully we'll be able to overcome it," Krause said, adding that Pippen "is eager to rejoin his teammates."

Pippen, considered the best all-around small forward in the league, has teamed with superstar Michael Jordan to lead the Bulls to five NBA titles in the last seven years.

Pippen also was a member of the 1992 and 1996 gold medal U.S. Olympic dream teams and was named to the NBA All-Defensive First Team each of the last six years.

The 32-year-old seven-time NBA All-Star initially suffered the injury in the Eastern Conference finals against the Miami Heat. He continued to play with pain as the Bulls went on to defeat the Utah Jazz in six games in the NBA Finals.