NBA Player News
Porter's described his right ankle injury suffered Jan. 31 versus the Bucks as "worse than I thought" and indicated that the NBA's suspension of the season has given him ample time to heal it up, Mike Singer of the Denver Post reports.
Porter was reportedly playing through discomfort prior to the postponement of the campaign, which may have played a role in his March 5 absence and could explain his struggles in the games just prior to the hiatus. If that's the case, Porter could return from the break looking to regain the role that saw him post 14.7 points and 9.0 rebounds over the 10 games prior to the ankle injury suffered in late January.
Leonard (ankle) said Thursday that he's been able to do footwork and agility work at home, and he estimated that he's about 90 percent healthy, Andre Fernandez of The Athletic reports.
Leonard has been sidelined nearly two months with a fairly serious left ankle sprain, but he looks to have just about moved past the injury. While he acknowledged that he's "not there yet" in terms of basketball shape, Leonard indicated that he expects to be ready to go whenever the NBA season resumes. He'd started in each of his first 49 appearances with the Heat this season, but he'll likely have to settle for a smaller role, as Miami added two more forwards (Jae Crowder and Andre Iguodala) to the rotation after Leonard got hurt.
The plan all along was for Wall to sit out the entirety of the 2019-20 season, but, according to Katz, the five-time All-Star was quietly cleared for contact behind the scenes. Wall had been scrimmaging with the Capital City Go-Go roughly every three days prior to the shutdown, playing 20-to-25 minutes per scrimmage. "You want a highly competitive deal, so we sort of decided with John, it was time to play with the Go-Go (and) practice," Wizards GM Tommy Sheppard said. "And when we can, we'd have a scrimmage for him. It's just been wonderful. It validates our process we have in place, to be able to utilize the Go-Go for so many functions to help the Wizards. And for them, I think those kids were freakin' thrilled to play with John." By all accounts, Wall was beginning to look like his old self in practices, with G League teammates praising his athleticism and competitiveness. "You always wonder (when) someone comes off an injury like that, how they (are going to) come back," Go-Go point guard Jerian Grant said. "He's been scrimmaging with us, and he's coast to coast in two seconds. So he looks really good. ... Still playing the way he was playing before the injuries." According to Go-Go coach Ryan Richman, Wall appeared to be in good physical shape. "He looks slim. He looks really good," Richman said. "If we didn't take him out, he'd just go the whole time."
Isaac said Tuesday that he feels "fantastic" as he continues through his rehab program but is still wearing a hinged brace to protected his left knee, Josh Robbins of The Athletic reports.
Isaac was diagnosed with a severe left knee sprain and bone contusion after exiting early Jan. 1 against Washington, and though he was able to avoid surgery, the Magic ruled him out for the season just over a month later. Since that time, the NBA has suspended its season due to the coronavirus pandemic, and the ongoing hiatus could provide Isaac with enough time to heal up from the injury and rejoin the Magic for a potential playoff run. Orlando likely won't have a firm timeline for Isaac's return for at least another month, however, as the 6-foot-11 forward still appears to be stuck in the initial stages of his rehab program. While Isaac has thus far avoided any setbacks, he has yet to resume any on-court activity since suffering the injury, and he won't even be allowed to work out in front of the Magic coaching staff until the NBA allows teams to reconvene.
Nets general manager Sean Marks said Wednesday that Irving (shoulder) isn't a safe bet to return to the court even if the suspended NBA season is resumed later in summer, Greg Logan of Newsday reports.
Irving was ruled out for the season after undergoing arthroscopic surgery March 3, but the NBA's decision to suspend operations indefinitely less than two weeks later may keep the door open for the star point guard to suit up again in 2019-20. Even so, the Nets likely won't have a good gauge of where Irving stands in his recovery for several weeks, as the team won't be able to hold regular meetings or practices to check in on him. Expect a clearer update on Irving's situation to arrive once the NBA gives teams the green light to reconvene for workouts.
General manager Sean Marks said Wednesday that Durant (Achilles) and the other three unnamed Nets players that tested positive for the coronavirus are all symptom-free after quarantining for the past 14 days, Greg Logan of Newsday reports.
Durant is still self-isolating as a precaution, but he otherwise seems to have made a full recovery from the virus. The 31-year-old can now turn his focus to strengthening his right leg while he approaches the finish line of his recovery from last June's surgery to repair a torn Achilles' tendon. Durant previously ruled himself out for the entire 2019-20 campaign, and recent reports have suggested that will likely remain the case even with the current season suspended indefinitely. Per Logan, Marks noted that even if the regular season and playoffs resume later in the summer, the Nets won't be able to properly gauge Durant's recovery process in the interim since they aren't holding practices.
Johnson (illness) said in an interview last week that he's made a full recovery from mononucleosis, Gina Mizell of The Athletic reports.
The illness kept Johnson sidelined for the Suns' most recent three games before the NBA suspended its season March 11 amid concern over the coronavirus pandemic. Johnson said his condition improved only a few days after the league-wide suspension, so he's already been able to regain the weight and strength he lost while battling the illness. He should be ready to go with no restrictions whenever the league resumes play.
Labissiere (knee) had been cleared to return to modified team practice before the NBA suspended its season March 11, Sarah K. Spencer of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
As Spencer notes, Labissiere's return to practice likely marks the final hurdle he needed to clear in his recovery from a left knee chondral injury, which had prevented him from playing since late December, when he was still a member of the Trail Blazers. With the NBA season unlikely to be resumed until at least May, Labissiere should be at or near full health once the Hawks are cleared to resume training. Even though he should be available for whatever games the Hawks have left, Labissiere is unlikely to hold a meaningful role in coach Lloyd Pierce's rotation.
Capela (heel) had progressed to participating in half-court workouts before the NBA suspended its season March 11, Sarah K. Spencer of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
Capela hasn't played since Jan. 29 due to a bout with plantar fasciitis in his right heel, but the center had been making notable strides in his recovery earlier this month. Updates on Capela's progress have been scarce since the league-wide shutdown, but the extra time off should only help his chances of making his Hawks debut this season, as play isn't likely to resume until at least May. Given that the Hawks are out of playoff contention, Capela will likely be treated cautiously for any games Atlanta has left on its schedule, with coach Lloyd Pierce likely to enforce some sort of minutes restriction for the center. That said, even a 20-minute role might be enough for Capela to return value in standard leagues for fantasy managers looking for help in field-goal percentage, blocks and rebounds.
Smart has been cleared from the coronavirus since Friday, Shams Charania of The Athletic reports.
Smart took to his personal Twitter account Sunday night to announce that he was cleared by the Massachusetts Department of Health on Friday. This is, of course, great news for Smart and the Celtics, but it remains very much unclear when we may see the defensive-minded guard on the court again.