After appearing in just 33 total games during the 2020-21 NBA season due to injury, Miami Heat guard Victor Oladipo could be good to go for the start of next season. Oladipo had surgery to repair his right quadriceps tendon on May 13, and he could be cleared to return to full-contact basketball by November, according to his operating surgeon, Dr. Jonathan Glashow, per ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.
Oladipo, 29, was traded at the deadline to Miami but only appeared in four games for the Heat, and hasn't played since April 8. Oladipo also previously had surgery on his quad in January of 2019, though that procedure obviously didn't fix the issue. In fact, Dr. Glashow was surprised that Oladipo was able to play at all based on the injury.
"I repaired the quad tendon and did it a little differently than [he had] it done before," Glashow said, via ESPN. "The quad wasn't really hooked up. It was torn, and I reattached it. I was amazed he was playing with what he had. I'm very optimistic that I could clear him in six months, by November. I think he's going to play really well again ... [The surgery] went extremely well, and it's healing beautifully. I'm confident he'll play next year."
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The fact that he should be able to play next season is obviously good news for Oladipo, who has been hampered by injury issues over the course of his career. Oladipo made two All-Star teams in 2018 and 2019 as a member of the Indiana Pacers, but he has played in just 88 total games over the past three seasons, and as a result there are lingering questions about his ceiling as a player moving forward.
While Oladipo should be back out on the court next season, the question now turns to where he will be playing. He'll be an unrestricted free agent this summer, and as such he will be free to sign anywhere he wants. Given his injury issues, it's fair to wonder exactly what type of contract offers will be out there for him. If he were fully healthy, the interest in him across the league's landscape would be extremely high. However, given that he'll be coming off a second surgery on his quad, teams might be hesitant to offer him a big contract. At this point, his best bet might be to a sign a shorter deal this offseason to prove that he can still be an elite player, and then cash in with a bigger deal after that.