Greg Oden still not playing basketball

1 Comment

Courtesy of the Portland Tribune’s Kerry Eggers, Here’s the latest on the talented but injury-plagued Blazers Center:

Despite rumor to the contrary, Greg Oden will not join his Trail Blazers teammates in informal scrimmage sessions this week at the club’s Tualatin training facility.
General Manager Rich Cho said Sunday that the 7-foot center is running and coming along well in rehab from December knee surgery, but not yet playing basketball.
“We’re going to ease him into it … maybe do some two-on-two or three-on-three, instead of up-and down five-on-five,” Cho said. “I’m hoping he’ll be cleared to do that in the next couple of weeks.”

Oden has been out since fracturing his left patella on December 5th, 2009. He missed his rookie season due to microfracture surgery on his right knee. Since being drafted, Oden has played in 82 of a possible 246 regular-season games. 

Oden’s 23.14 PER last season would have been the 8th-best mark in the league if he had played enough to qualify, and the Blazers were 5.2 points per 100 possessions better when Oden was on the floor last season. Oden still has the talent to be one of the best centers in the league — hopefully this is the last time he’ll have to suffer through an extended injury rehab process. 

Pelicans signing center Jerome Jordan

Marc Gasol, Jerome Jordan
Leave a comment

Through the first two weeks of training camp, the Pelicans have seen their frontcourt depth decimated by injuries to Alexis Ajinca and Omer Asik, both of whom are out for a few weeks. A deal with Greg Smith fell through after he failed a physical. Now, Yahoo’s Marc Spears reports that they’re signing former Knicks and Nets center Jerome Jordan as a short-term solution:

Jordan has only played 65 games in his career and hasn’t been spectacular, but the Pelicans need a body while their two centers are out. Anthony Davis will spend some time at center, but considering the contracts Asik and Ajinca got this summer, Alvin Gentry clearly plans on playing him at power forward as well, and they need a center to at least fill time before Asik and Ajinca get back.

Kevin Love unsure about opening-night return

Kevin Love
Leave a comment

He’s back in practice with the Cavaliers, but there’s still no clarity on whether Kevin Love will be available for the season opener. Love had shoulder surgery in April after suffering a torn labrum in Game 4 of the Cavs’ first-round series against the Celtics, and doctors initially gave him a timetable of four to six months for a return. The six-month end of that is right around opening night (October 27), but Love still doesn’t know whether he’ll be able to play against the Bulls—although he is hopeful.

Via the Sporting News‘ Sean Deveney:

“I feel pretty good,” Love told Sporting News. “As far as the opener goes, I am not completely sure. I’ll probably get with the doctors and see what they have to say. I know that my six-month post-op is coming up here pretty fast. As far as getting the strength back, getting the range of motion, I feel pretty good, so I am looking forward to getting into some more contact, getting into a rhythm and getting out there as quickly as I can.”

Love has been cleared for 3-on-3 practices, but not yet for 5-on-5. If it were up to him, he’d be back on the court, but he understands he needs to follow the rehab protocol for his injury.

“(Six months is) just a ballpark figure that has generally been thrown out there by anybody who has talked about the rehab process for this kind of an injury,” Love said. “I like to think that I am ahead of the game, but there’s different tests and the due diligence that the doctor will go through and the training staff will go through. So all I can do is go out there every day and attack my rehab and hopefully I will be able to go out there and help these guys as soon as possible.”

At the very least, the Cavs will be without Kyrie Irving (still recovering from knee surgery) and Iman Shumpert (out up to three months with a wrist injury), and probably Tristan Thompson too, unless his contract situation changes unexpectedly. So having Love available would be some much-needed good news. But it’s more important that Love (and everyone else) is healthy for the playoffs. If he’s not ready to play, there’s no need to rush back for an October game.