Indiana Pacers guard Victor Oladipo understands the recovery from the ruptured quad tendon in his right knee will be long and grueling.
He is determined to come back even stronger after undergoing surgery Monday.
“He is expected to make a full recovery. No timetable has been established for his return,” the Pacers said.
Oladipo was injured in Wednesday’s victory over Toronto. He was scrambling back to defend an outlet pass when his leg bent awkwardly and he fell to the ground. Trainers immediately a draped a towel over his injured leg and he was taken off the court on a stretcher. An MRI on Thursday confirmed the Pacers’ worst fears — their top scorer would not play again this season.
Over the weekend, though, Oladipo addressed the injury for the first time publicly.
“I can’t even lie the last few months have been really tough for not only me but for my family as well. You give it your all, literally your blood, sweat and tears to the game you love and things like this happen,” he wrote on Instagram, adding that he will rely on his faith to help him get through the rehabilitation. He thanked fans and others from around the league for sharing their support.
Tyreke Evans replaced Oladipo in the starting lineup Saturday at Memphis and scored nine points in Indiana’s 106-103 loss.
The Pacers currently hold the No. 3 spot in the Eastern Conference chase and many expect them to struggle against a tougher schedule over the next three months without Oladipo, who averaged 19.2 points.
But even though Indiana is 7-5 without Oladipo this season, coach Nate McMillan said Thursday he expected to discuss options as the Feb. 7 trade deadline nears.
Jones out six weeks
Derrick Jones Jr. of the Miami Heat is out for at least six weeks with a pair of bone bruises in his right knee.
The bruising is significant, but given the way he got hurt the injury could have been worse. Jones was injured Sunday in Miami’s win over New York. He was driving toward the basket when his knee buckled. He left the court in obvious pain, and was unable to put any weight on the leg.
But tests performed in Miami on Monday showed no structural damage, only the bone bruising. He will be re-evaluated in mid-March and the Heat are hopeful he plays again this season.
Jones has appeared in 37 games for the Heat this season, averaging 7.4 points and 4.4 rebounds on 51 percent shooting.
Brooklyn Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie had surgery on torn ligaments in his right thumb. The team announced the operation prior to a game against the Boston Celtics. Nets coach Kenny Atkinson said he’d been texting with Dinwiddie — presumably using his left hand — and says the 25-year-old is in “good spirits.” Atkinson declined to provide a timeline for Dinwiddie’s return.