Mirotic accepts apology from Bulls team-mate Portis after fight
Chicago Bulls forward Nikola Mirotic is ready to move on from the fight with his team-mate during practice last month.
Nikola Mirotic is putting the past behind him after accepting an apology from Chicago Bulls team-mate Bobby Portis following the pair's altercation in October.
Mirotic remains sidelined after suffering several broken bones in his face as well as a concussion after the two Bulls players came to blows during a practice session last month.
Portis was banned for eight games after the fight and Mirotic – who broke his silence on Wednesday – said he is hopeful the duo can move on.
"We are team-mates," Mirotic, who resumed training on Monday, said after practice. "We are on the same team.
"Obviously we are fighting for this team. We both are going to do what we need to do to make it work. Yeah, I did accept his apology."
Mirotic, who attended a Bulls game on Tuesday for the first time since the incident, said he will continue to do his part in keeping the peace.
"I'm comfortable being with the team," Mirotic said. "I had a lot of support from my team-mates, from everybody. Right now it's on me to relax and enjoy playing basketball again, to get my strength back.
"It's been a long time since I didn't play. ... When I stepped into the United Center [Tuesday] it was a huge feeling for me, really excited just to be on the bench so yeah, I'm excited.
"I've been playing this game nine years professionally. I was always a good team-mate, always professional with everybody and I'm going to continue to do that. If I'm here it's because I want to continue to support the team. He's a part of the team. I'm going to support him, too. Obviously, I'm going to give him [fist bumps], like he would give me [fist bumps] too."
Mirotic was initially given a recovery timeline of four to six weeks but could return to action with the Bulls as early as later this week.