Grizzlies' Marc Gasol returns to full practice but no return date set

By Zach Harper | NBA writer

Gasol is back to full practices but no return date is set. (USATSI)
Marc Gasol is back to full practices but no return date is set. (USATSI)

When Memphis Grizzlies' center Marc Gasol went down with a sprained MCL back in late November, it seemed like the team was going to be without their big man for a long time. This likely meant they'd be without a playoff appearance for the first time since 2010. Gasol missing a couple of months with the knee injury, then working his way back to full strength was supposed to mean the Grizzlies' season was effectively over.

That may not be the case though. The Grizzlies have hung around the playoff race (17-19, four games out of the 8-seed) in Gasol's absence and could be getting the 2013 Defensive Player of the Year back in games pretty soon. Gasol is back to full practices with his teammates. He still hasn't set a return date but he's pretty close to being back on the court.

Since playing just 10 minutes on November 22 when the Grizzlies lost to the San Antonio Spurs, Gasol has missed 23 games. It's probable he'll miss a few more before he returns to action. During those 23 games, the Grizzlies have posted a record of 10-13. Considering they lost their best player in Gasol during that time, that's a pretty successful stretch of basketball without him.

While they still have to get him back and get him to full strength, the Grizzlies have treaded water long enough to still be within striking distance of the playoffs at this time. Gasol was averaging 16.0 points, 7.1 rebounds, and 4.3 assists in 34 minutes before the knee injury. The points and assists averages are career highs. Memphis was 7-5 before the game in which he went down with the injury.

CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
Conversation powered by Livefyre

nba Video

August 3, 2015
Adidas offers James Harden $200 million (1:48)
August 3, 2015
New York Knicks offseason report
August 3, 2015
Ray Allen's NBA future
August 3, 2015
Will Kings find stability?


Most Popular Shop

Men's Nike Charcoal Denver Broncos Training Camp Performance T-Shirt

NFL Training Camp Gear
Get your favorite team
Shop Now

Picks and Projections
Get the latest picks and projections sent directly to your inbox!
Thank you for subscribing!
Be on the lookout for the latest picks, lines, projections and analysis in your inbox.