The nagging pain in his knees — both of them, but the left more than the right — is starting to test the Thunder guard’s patience. “Sometimes there’s frustration,” Abrines said at Thursday’s shootaround before the Thunder played the Denver Nuggets. “I want to feel for, like a week or 10 days, no pain. Just be myself. It’s kind of hard.”
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Thunder second-year shooting guard Alex Abrines is scheduled to make his preseason debut Tuesday night against the Nuggets after missing the first three games of the preseason with a bone bruise on his left knee.
Erik Horne: Billy Donovan said Russell Westbrook and Patrick Patterson did not practice. Alex Abrines was “fine,” not held back.
Brett Dawson: Presti says OKC caught Abrines’ bone bruise “at the right time,” and will be “conservative” in transitioning players back onto the floor.
Abrines hyperextended his right knee playing for his native Spain in FIBA EuroBasket. And though he was held him out of the rest of the tournament – at least in part at the request of the Thunder, according to an earlier report from Spanish website MARCA – Abrines said the injury’s effects didn’t linger long. “I didn’t feel pain at all after the first day,” he said Wednesday during a Thunder Cares visit to the Oklahoma City Zoo. “But the MRI said I had a bone bruise, so that’s what keeps me (off) of the court.”
That new weight might “drop down a little bit,” he said, as he focuses less on strength and more on other parts of his game in preparation for the season. And he’s anxious to be back on the court focusing less on that preparation and more on his game. “For me, I could do everything, because I don’t feel any pain,” Abrines said. “It just depends on the doctors right now.”
“Today is certainly a difficult day,” Abrines tweeted out in a statement that has been translated from its original Spanish. “Today I have to leave Eurobasket, something that those who know me know it hurts especially, because being part of this TEAM is an honor and a privilege. Even these days, unable to help on the court, although difficult, have been important to me. I can only thank others for worrying so much about me. Finally, this is the time and place to give all the strength in the world to my teammates, to ‘The Family,’ who will certainly fight until the last day to achieve our goal, winning Eurobasket.”
The Spanish national team has called the Abrines injury “minor.” The Thunder do not begin training camp until the last week of September. Preseason begins Oct. 3.
Following a mutual decision between the Spanish Basketball Federation and the Oklahoma City Thunder, Alex Abrines will stay out of the remainder of the EuroBasket. As reported by Spanish Marca, the knee injury that the 24-year-old swingman suffered in Game 1 of the tournament vs Montenegro is enough to cause an alarm. “There is no veto in this kind of situation. The only thing that matters is the condition of the player,” is the Federation’s position.
Gerald Bourguet: Leandro Barbosa out again tonight for PHX. No Andre Roberson (left knee soreness) or Alex Abrines (left knee sprain) for OKC. #SunsVsThunder
Fred Katz: Alex Abrines (sprained left knee) is out for tomorrow’s game in Phoenix. Andre Roberson (knee soreness) is questionable.
Erik Horne: Alex Abrines injury opens up more minutes for Doug McDermott. Billy Donovan said he’ll probably be in Abrines’ rotation spot.
Erik Horne: Donovan said Thunder “probably escaped a little bit” in regard to Abrines injury. No timetable for return but could have been more severe.
Royce Young: Alex Abrines had an MRI that confirmed a knee sprain. He’s day to day. Not with team tonight in Memphis. Could join team on this trip though
Erik Horne: Left knee sprain for Alex Abrines, per Thunder. Will not return.
Brett Dawson: Alex Abrines is fine. Just a scratched eye. Donovan doesn’t expect him to need goggles.
Fred Katz: Abrines will not return after getting poked in the left eye during the first half, per the Thunder.
Brett Dawson: Alex Abrines is available tonight.
Guard Alex Abrines, who has missed the Thunder’s past two games with back spasms, did some “light shooting” at Saturday’s practice, Donovan said, but it was unclear if he’d be ready to play Sunday when the Thunder hosts Portland. “I think he feels like it’s getting better, but I don’t know if he’s at a point where he feels he can go out there and play yet,” Donovan said.
Brett Dawson: Alex Abrines (back spasms) out again tonight, Billy Donovan says.
Royce Young: Alex Abrines is in the Thunder’s locker room with back spasms and is doubtful to play tonight, per the team.
Brett Dawson: Alex Abrines is being evaluated for “concussion-like symptoms,” per the Thunder. Alex Abrines: 👍😀💪⚡️🏀 I’m fine!! #ThunderUp #HAPPYNEWYEAR pic.twitter.com/Aqio3AMwK0
He didn’t play after halftime. Abrines missed the next game with what the Spanish Basketball Federation called “discomfort in his left knee.” He was being rested for precautionary reasons. Abrines did play late minutes in Spain’s final group game against Argentina on Monday. But the sit-down signaled a continuation of niggling injuries for Abrines in the last three years. In 2013, he missed the U20 European Championships to recover from patellar tendonitis in his right knee. In March 2015, he had to miss two weeks with FC Barcelona after tweaking the same knee in EuroLeague competition. In Aug. 2015, Abrines had to start special treatment for plantar fasciitis in his right foot while training with Spain. The common bond between his injuries: stress. Patellar tendonitis is caused by stress on the patella tendon. Plantar fasciitis can be brought on by stress on the heel and the attached tissue on the bottom of the foot. The heel pain from plantar fasciitis can also lead to problems with the knees, back or hips.
Fred Katz: Alex Abrines (knee) didn’t play again, though he did go through warmups this time. No reason to risk further injury in a 50-point game, of course
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