Dwyane Wade has been ruled out for the rest of the season due to an elbow injury, but he might be back for the playoffs if the Chicago Bulls make it. The 35-year old shooting guard said he will play in the postseason if he is cleared, but the things are not looking good for him, as the Bulls are not likely to make the playoffs.

Wade played 57 games for Chicago this season before going down with the injury. His elbow was hurt a week ago against the Memphis Grizzlies and the Chicago Bulls have been 2-3 since then. At the moment, the Bulls are tied for the ninth spot in the East and they are five games under .500.

Dwyane Wade is a key piece of the team

Even though Wade is 35 and the best years of his career are far behind him, he is still a key piece of the Chicago Bulls and team's second-best player. Wade averaged 18.6 points, 4.5 rebounds and 3.9 assists per game this season, and the Bulls had 27 wins and 30 losses in the games he played in. Unfortunately, things haven't gone well since Wade's injury and the Bulls are slowly collapsing.

A lot of things can change as the Bulls have nine more games left in the season. Right now, they are 1.5 games behind the eighth seed in the conference, which happens to be Dwyane Wade's former team, Miami Heat. Bulls' schedule is rather easy as they have six games left against below-average teams, but it won't be easy without Wade.

Wade's return is essential

Even if the Chicago Bulls make the playoffs, it is very unlikely that they will win a game without Dwyane Wade as they will face one of the best teams in the conference.

Besides his amazing basketball skills that he shows on the court, Wade is also a great mentor and a leader of the team. However, Chicago Bulls fan base is split into those who think that Wade should return and those who think they are better off without him. David Haugh of the "Chicago Tribune" recently added fuel to the fire by saying that Dwyane Wade should just sit out if the Bulls make the playoffs.

With all due respect, the Bulls cannot function normally with Wade on the sideline and they definitely cannot achieve success in the postseason without this three-time NBA champion.

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