76ers’ GM unsure if Markelle Fultz will return this season

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PHILADELPHIA (AP) — The Philadelphia 76ers are unsure if Markelle Fultz will play again this season.

The 20-year-old Fultz was diagnosed this month with thoracic outlet syndrome and is doing physical therapy in Los Angeles. General manager Elton Brand said Saturday prior to a game against Toronto he has no timetable for Fultz’s return to basketball activities.

Brand said it was “to be determined” if Fultz will play again this season.

“I can’t say right now,” Brand said.

The GM expects to update Fultz’s situation in “a few weeks.”

Fultz was the No. 1 overall pick in the 2017 draft, but his young career has been sidetracked by injuries and ineffectiveness. He averaged 8.2 points through 19 games but was shut down by his agent shortly after Jimmy Butler arrived via trade from Minnesota and Fultz lost his spot in the starting lineup.

Fultz’s shooting form, particularly from the free-throw line, has been scrutinized.

Fultz has seen a myriad of specialists, going back to last summer, before he was given a diagnosis of thoracic outlet syndrome, where nerves are compressed in the space between the collarbone and first rib. The physical therapy for Fultz was expected to run into January, but this is uncharted territory and Philadelphia does not know what to expect.

Fultz played just 14 games last season because of a shoulder injury that appeared to affect his shooting mechanics.

The Sixers have publicly denied wanting to trade Fultz, although reports say they would do it for a good first round pick.