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(Reuters) - Joakim Noah's season is in jeopardy as the Chicago Bulls center will undergo shoulder surgery and miss four to six months, the National Basketball Association team said on Saturday.
Noah, the heart and soul of a Bulls team that has endured many injury-filled seasons in recent years, dislocated his left shoulder in the second quarter of Friday's game against the Dallas Mavericks.
The Bulls said the two-time All-Star and former Defensive Player of the Year was evaluated earlier on Saturday where it was determined surgery was necessary.
"The details of the timing, location, and rehabilitation program have not yet been finalized. Noah is expected to have a full recovery," the Bulls said in a statement.
Noah missed nine games earlier this season with a slight tear in his troubled left shoulder and was being used as a reserve player, a reduced role for the regular starting player.
The loss of Noah is a big blow to a Bulls (23-16) who are third in the Eastern Conference.
The Bulls' final regular season game is on April 13.
Writing by Jahmal Corner in Los Angeles; Editing by Frank Pingue