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Festus Ezeli: I am saddened that this year I had to turn down my invite to play in the Africa Game again due to my surgery and rehabilitation. But I am so proud of the NBA and NBPA for continuing what I hope will be a LONG standing tradition of expanding and sharing opportunities and the love of this Game to ppl all around the Globe
Festus Ezeli: Tragedy and trials come to everybody. Only the strong survive! #RebuildingABeast
Festus Ezeli: WATCH ▶️ A little sneak peek into my world these days. Recovery is an up & down hill. How do you respond to adversity? pic.twitter.com/XcBNdaoxU0
Ezeli never played in his first season with the Blazers. He had cadaver ligament replacement surgery on his left knee on March 7. The 6-foot-11, 265-pounder has not been told who the donor was, but through his doctor he can give a letter to the family, who can then decide whether they want to meet him. Ezeli is hopeful they will want to after he gives the letter to his doctor during a follow-up appointment on May 7. “I’m actually working on my letter right now because I really do want to meet them,” Ezeli told The Undefeated this past week. “I have no clue who I got it from. It had to be a big person. There are so many different requirements to getting the cadaver. It was kind of crazy. It had to be a big person, about my weight and size, so that I could handle my weight as I play basketball. The person had to be young so it’s not brittle. And there’s all these different restrictions.
“It’s kind of crazy. You’re literally waiting for somebody to pass away. It’s the saddest thing. And I feel so blessed. I don’t know what the word is. For them to choose me, I’m just thankful. I don’t know any information. The hospitals are very tight-lipped on information about their patients. I’m just hoping that they contact me after they get my letter.”
Ezeli said he passed a physical before signing a two-year, $15.2 million deal with the Blazers last offseason after averaging career highs of 7.0 points, 5.6 rebounds and 1.1 blocks in 16.7 minutes per game during the 2015-16 season. Ezeli said he “felt good” entering training camp and believed he could give the Blazers a much-needed rim protector, rebounder and post scorer. Blazers coach Terry Stotts was excited about what he saw during a scrimmage.
Trail Blazers center Festus Ezeli underwent surgery on his left knee, it was announced today by president of basketball operations The surgery was performed by Dr. Robert LaPrade at the Steadman Clinic in Vail, Colorado.
Portland Trail Blazers center Festus Ezeli is expected to undergo an unconventional surgical procedure on his left knee next week. The procedure will involve the use of a cadaver donor, league sources told ESPN. Ezeli has sought a donor for months, sources say, but due to his 6-foot-11 stature, finding a matching donor was problematic.
Trail Blazers center Festus Ezeli is expected to undergo surgery next week on his left knee, it was announced today by Neil Olshey, president of basketball operations. While the exact surgery date is pending, it will be performed by Dr. Robert LaPrade at the Steadman Clinic in Vail, Colorado. Ezeli will be out for the remainder of the 2016-17 season.
Oliver Maroney: Per @Jason Quick: Ezeli will not be with Blazers on four game road trip. His agent also says it’s not because of an impending surgery.
Are you at all optimistic about it? Festus Ezeli: I’m very optimistic. At the end of the day, I’m going to work my way to get back no matter what the rehab protocol entails. I just, I’ve done it a couple times now to where I can’t take shortcuts anymore. I’ve tried to take shortcuts in the past to try to get back on the court as soon as I could but at this point now, I have to address this issue that’s kind of getting worse, especially now that I can correct it instead of waiting until later.
You mentioned shortcuts. Do you feel, particularly last year, that you came back to fast? Festus Ezeli: Well, I did come back fast last year and that hurt me a little bit. But that’s a decision that you don’t think twice about making those decisions. We were in the Finals and we had a historic season, so for me to be able to contribute to my team getting to the Finals and possibly winning the championship, I’ll make that decision every time because you never know when you’re going to get back to the Finals. But that’s a decision that I’m paying for right now, so we’re going to correct it and we’ll be better for it. I will be better for it.
Marc J. Spears: Blazers center Festus Ezeli statement to @espn @theundefeated: “Everyone has moments of setback. It’s unfortunate and disappointing that I am facing one of those right now. My aim is to fundamentally address issues that have lingered so that I can be the best that I can be, to help my team contend for and win the title. To all concerned I assure this, my love for the game nothing but ensures that I will be back better and stronger than ever and you can take that to the bank.”
Shams Charania: Vertical Sources: Portland center Festus Ezeli is likely to undergo season-ending surgery on his left knee. Finalizing procedure decision.
Festus Ezeli did not travel with the team to Houston for its five-game East Coast trip on Wednesday, according to coach Terry Stotts, opting instead to seek another medical opinion on his ailing left knee. The defensive-minded center, signed as a free agent by the Blazers over the summer to shore up their interior defense, has not played in a game this season while recovering from an August procedure on his knee.
Trail Blazers center Festus Ezeli last month suffered a minor setback in his comeback from a left knee procedure, CSNNW.com has learned. Ezeli suffered swelling in his left knee after he took part in two Blazers practices on Oct. 17 and Oct. 18, after which the Blazers have pulled back on his activity. “I practiced, and that’s what happens sometimes – it reacts, swells up, you go back, regress and come back,’’ Ezeli said Tuesday night before the Blazers game with Phoenix.
“It’s going to be slow,’’ he said of his recovery. “It is slow. But hopefully rewarding at the end.’’ The Blazers have not put a timetable on his return, but the front office has been clear since the summer that Ezeli was signed more for the spring than the winter. Neil Olshey, the team’s president of basketball operations, signed the 6-foot-11 Ezeli to a two-year, $15 million contract, with only $7 million and the first year guaranteed. Then asked during training camp if fans should be patient with Ezeli’s return, Olshey was emphatic. “They better be,’’ Olshey said. “I don’t know why they wouldn’t. There has to be a reality to Festus and the contract he signed. We are going to be patient with Festus … we saw what he can do in the Golden State series last season. But he’s going to take a little bit of time.’’
Festus Ezeli, who underwent a procedure on his left knee in August, is still not close to a return. “We’re taking it day by day,” said the 6-11 center, who signed a two-year, $15-million free-agent contract with Portland in July. “I’ve had some ups and downs.” Ezeli was recently given clearance to begin shooting drills, but has not yet participated in any 3-on-3 activity. “There’s no timetable (for a return) when it comes to this stuff,” he said. “It goes by feel. Some days I feel good. There are good days and bad days, but there’s progress overall.”
“The sheriff is back in town,” Ezeli said, chuckling, after the workout. “It felt good. It felt good to be out there on the court. We’ll take today as a good foundation and build from here.”
Unfortunately, one of their acquisitions, big man Festus Ezeli, is expected to miss all of training camp and most of the preseason after having his left knee injected with a bone marrow aspirate concentrate to alleviate pain in late August. “I personally don’t have a timeline,” Ezeli said while visiting at a Boys and Girls Club in North Portland on Thursday. “I’m taking it day by day because when it comes to this situation, you never go with a timeline. It will frustrate me if I go by a timeline. I just try to take it by how I feel so hopefully sometime soon I can get back on the court and start playing again.”
Portland Trail Blazers center Festus Ezeli is expected to be out six weeks after undergoing an injection in his left knee, according to the team.
The injection, performed by Dr. Brian Cole, is intended to alleviate pain and improve function. Ezeli will be sidelined for six weeks.
Matthew Mozek: Why was there no interest in Festus Ezeli over Andrew Bogut? Price tag? Age/upside/injury history all favor Ezeli over Bogut. – Chuck Cooperstein: Was told Ezeli knees are VERY iffy. Not a better player than Bogut. Indeed Hammons might be better talent.
Jason Quick: Agent David Mondress at Blazers practice facility. He is from BDA, which represents Festus Ezeli. Festus Ezeli is being looked at today by Blazers doctors, according to agent David Mondress but is also considering other teams.
Jason Quick: Agent David Mondress made it clear it was not a physical for Festus Ezeli because that would imply a deal has been made or discussed. Not the case so far.
Ezeli, 26, is coming off a season when he missed six weeks to have his left knee cleaned out. Three years ago, he missed the 2013-2014 season after having a procedure on his right knee to reinforce the MCL and PCL ligaments. “My knees feel great. Feel great,’’ Ezeli said. “It sucks that I had surgery, but the surgery was to fix.’’
Marc J. Spears: Warriors coach Steve Kerr said center Festus Ezeli (knee surgery) took part in shoot around this morning & could return to action next week.
Janie McCauley: Followed up after w/Kerr re Festus Ezeli. If 2 on 2, 3 on 3 scrimmages go well coming days could be later next week in games, not Tues-Wed.
Marc J. Spears: Warriors coach Steve Kerr says Andre Iguodala is still “a ways away from playing” and Festus Ezeli is “progressing nicely” & playing 2-on-2.
Backup center Festus Ezeli was re-evaluated over the weekend just shy of the six-week mark after left knee surgery, and he is showing “really good” progress as he continued to increase his on-court workload, according to the team.
“My expectation is to come back and play in the regular season,” said Ezeli, who averaged 7.5 points and 5.9 rebounds in 40 games. “Actually, (I’m) probably a little bit ahead of schedule. I’m already walking. I went from two crutches to one. So I’m doing well so far. I’m making progress.”
Marc J. Spears: Warriors center Festus Ezeli is expected to return to action in six weeks after having left knee surgery today, a source told Yahoo Sports.
Rusty Simmons: Festus Ezeli is having surgery on his left knee, according to the Warriors. Updates later.
Warriors backup center Festus Ezeli, who has missed the past four games because of a knee injury, isn’t likely to return to action until after the NBA All-Star Game, coach Steve Kerr said Friday. “We’re going to be cautious,” Kerr said after Golden State completed practice in preparation for Saturday’s home game against the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Kerr said nothing has changed, but that Ezeli’s agent and the club will bring in additional doctors the next couple of days to check out the cartilage issue that has sidelined the third-year player, who averages 7.5 points and 5.9 rebounds off the bench.
He said the team hopes to have a more clear picture on Ezeli’s status within a couple of days. “Sometimes these things aren’t easily diagnosed from an MRI. That’s why we’re getting more opinions,” Kerr said. “That’s about the extent of my knowledge.”
Diamond Leung: Festus Ezeli to be reevaluated tomorrow according to Steve Kerr.
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March 23, 2018 | 10:04 pm EDT Update
Mark Murphy: Evan Turner on Smart jamming thumb while going for loose ball: “Absolutely not (surprised). I don’t think he’d feel comfortable unless he had to double check himself before he got up off the ground. He’s a warrior.”