Coach Alvin Gentry acknowledged Friday that Pondexter (knee) is unlikely to return for the remainder of the regular season, ESPN.com's Justin Verrier reports. "[Pondexter] will be gearing toward the summer and next year, really," Gentry said.
Pondexter, who hasn't appeared in an NBA game since the 2014-15 postseason, required a third surgery on his left knee back in January and is still rehabbing. Though he's only 29 years old, the multiple setbacks Pondexter has endured with the knee seemingly put his career in jeopardy, but he'll still remain on the Pelicans' books for 2017-18, the final year of the four-year, $14 million contract extension he initially signed with the Grizzlies in the summer of 2014.
Pondexter underwent arthroscopic surgery on his left knee Wednesday and remains without a timetable for a return.
Pondexter didn't appear in a single game during the 2015-16 season after requiring two surgeries in less than eight months on his left knee and also has yet to take the court during the 2016-17 campaign. He appeared to finally be making progress in his recovery when he was cleared for non-contact work at the start of December, but he's now required yet another procedure to clean up the knee. While a timetable has yet to be released, this latest surgery should keep him out at least another month, although it wouldn't be surprising if he ended up staying sidelined well into the later stages of the NBA season.
Pondexter (knee) has been cleared for non-contact work, Justin Verrier of ESPN.com reports.
Pondexter has come along in his recovery much slower than anticipated, but it appears he's finally made a break through and is progressing to the next stage. He's now able to go through shooting drills and other non-contact individual drills, which means his eventual return to the court is not far off. Of course, he likely still needs to log a couple of full-contact practices before getting the green light to play, which could mean he's still a couple of weeks away.
Pondexter (knee) remains without a timetable for a return, ESPN.com's Justin Verrier reports. "With Quincy, we should get a better understanding [on his health] if not [by] the end of the week, then the beginning of next week," Pelicans GM Dell Demps said Tuesday. "And then we'll hopefully get him back on the court."
Demps had previously indicated in late October that Pondexter's condition would be reevaluated in about two weeks, but the Pelicans have continued to hold off on doing that. It's likely an indication that Pondexter hasn't made much progress since that time, and it seems increasingly likely the veteran forward won't be able to play until the calendar flips to 2017. Pondexter hasn't played in an NBA game since the 2014-15 postseason after requiring two procedures to address his left knee.
Demps has declined to give a return timeline for Pondexter, but did suggest that the forward is likely further behind in his recovery from injury than Tyreke Evans (knee), who is expected back between late November and mid-December. Once Pondexter is reevaluated, the Pelicans should have a better idea on a return date, but with the 28-year-old having not suited up in a game since April 2015, he'll likely face significant restrictions when he's finally cleared to play again.
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