Upon being traded to the Indiana Pacers as part of a four-team deal that sent James Harden to the Brooklyn Nets, Caris LeVert underwent a physical before joining Indiana where a small mass was found on his left kidney. It's still unclear what that means, but the former Nets forward is out indefinitely as he undergoes further tests.
While LeVert wants to return to basketball, his health is his top priority right now, and is grateful that this MRI revealed something that he had no idea was going on.
"I didn't have any symptoms. I was playing in games. I hadn't missed any games this season yet. I was feeling 100 percent healthy," LeVert said. "So, in a way, this trade definitely showed and revealed what was going on in my body; so I'm definitely looking at it from that side and definitely humbled to know that this trade could've possibly saved me in the long run."
LeVert said he is still awaiting test results, and is unsure if the mass is cancerous or not.
This situation is far bigger than basketball, as this could potentially have a serious impact on LeVert's health outside of the game going forward. While Indiana would love to have him in the fold to continue its impressive start to the season, his debut is up in the air.
"Obviously, I want to play as soon as possible. I'm a competitor; I love to play the game. But for me, I think making sure I'm good healthwise is most important. So, as far as timeline and everything like that, we'll definitely figure it out sometime in the future. But right now, we just don't have those answers."
Prior to being traded to Indiana, LeVert was averaging 18.5 points, 6.0 assists and 4.3 rebounds a game. He split time between starting and coming off the bench for Brooklyn after starting in the majority of Nets games last season.
When Indiana originally announced that LeVert would be out for a period of time, Pacers president Kevin Pritchard spoke glowingly of LeVert's character, and was optimistic that he would have a "great career ahead of him." As LeVert undergoes testing, Pritchard's support hasn't wavered.
"This organization's gonna step up, help him get through this, get him back on the court," Pritchard said. "I'm super confident that we're gonna have him on the court."
Getting LeVert back on the court is obviously second to ensuring he his healthy going forward. Hopefully he will have some clarity soon on this situation and will be able to make a full recovery.