Rudy Gay, who was forced to sit on the sidelines and watch the Grizzlies’ incredible playoff run last season, recently sat down and talked with Grantland’s Jonathan Abrams about his recovery from the serious shoulder injury he suffered:
What’s it like to get back on the court?
I was excited and kind of had to crash. I got real tired, and right now I’m working myself back. I wasn’t able to do anything for seven months.
How did you fill that time up?
Sulking, for the most part.
What was going through your head while you watched the Grizzlies during their playoff run?
It was tough. But I think I needed it for my career. I’ve never been injured, never been anything. Now I take care of my body better. I’m planning to play every game like my last, because I know what it’s like to get it taken away from you.
Gay goes on to talk about how he thinks the Grizzlies would have done in the playoffs if he had been healthy, Zach Randolph’s breakout playoff performance, how he’s at about “90%” right now, and how he doesn’t think he could guard LeBron, or himself, for 40 straight minutes with the way the NBA is now.
The Grizzlies will certainly be glad to have Gay’s perimeter scoring back in the lineup, but Gay, a historically weak defender, may have to expend more energy on that end of the floor next season if the Grizzlies want to build on their defense-fueled playoff success.
Khris Middleton has more expectations and more pressure on him after a breakout season in Milwaukee, followed by him getting him PAID this summer.
Well, he looked pretty good on this play against the Bulls, making the steal then throwing down despite Jimmy Butler‘s efforts to stop him.
Middleton finished with 10 points on 5-of-7 shooting for the Bucks. However, Butler had the last laugh as he went off for 23 points on 12 shots and led the Bulls to the (meaningless) preseason win.
Paul George‘s first experience starting as a power forward was going up against Anthony Davis — not just one of the best power forwards in the game, one of the handful of best players in the game period. That didn’t go well for George, and he wasn’t happy about it.
His second experience was in another preseason game Tuesday, going up against the Pistons and their four, Ersan İlyasova. He’s not quite as intimidating.
George scored 20 points on 7-of-8 shooting, 4-of-5 on threes — and that was just the first quarter (you can see it all in the video above).
As we have said before, George at the four is not a bad call by the Pacers, but some of that depends on the matchup. On the nights the Pacers face Davis or Blake Griffin or LaMarcus Aldridge or Zach Randolph (or a handful of others) the Pacers’ coaching staff is going to have to adjust. But there are a lot of nights where George at the four is going to force the other team to adjust, and that will play into the Pacers’ hands.