Sarah K. Spencer: Nate McMillan on Onyeka Okongwu: "Get…

Sarah K. Spencer: Nate McMillan on Onyeka Okongwu: “Getting close where he’s starting to do some things live, but he played a little 3-on-3 yesterday and came out OK.” McMillan said there’s no timeline on his return yet and Hawks will be cautious with Okongwu.

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Atlanta Hawks center Onyeka Okongwu -- the sixth overall pick in the 2020 NBA draft -- underwent surgery to repair a torn labrum in his right shoulder on Wednesday, and he will miss approximately six months, sources told ESPN. Okongwu's role grew as the season wore on for the Hawks, but a lingering injury beginning in May resulted in the need for the procedure. Renowned surgeon Dr. Neal ElAttrache of Kerlan-Jobe performed the procedure on Okongwu in Los Angeles, sources said.
Chris Kirschner: For tonight’s game vs. Cleveland: Trae Young (left quad soreness) is probable. Clint Capela (left heel pain) is questionable. Onyeka Okongwu (right adductor soreness) is questionable. Dunn, Reddish and Hunter are out.
Kevin Chouinard: Hawks say that For tonight’s game vs. LA Lakers: Trae Young (left knee soreness) is probable. Onyeka Okongwu (left Achilles soreness) is questionable. Dunn, Bogdanovic, Hunter are out.
Sarah K. Spencer: Per the Hawks, Kris Dunn has cartilage disruption in his right knee and can do modified workouts. Okongwu still has inflammation in his sesamoid bone; he's limited to shooting/conditioning. Snell has inflammation in his right cuboid bone; he's limited to shooting/conditioning. pic.twitter.com/p0Ud2j9gQB

http://twitter.com/sarah_k_spence/status/1333517882152660995
Sarah K. Spencer: Onyeka Okongwu says he got a second MRI done on his foot and it has improved since the last time he had it checked. So, positive news on that front. Says he thinks it won't limit him in the season.
Storyline: Onyeka Okongwu Injury
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November 30, 2021 | 8:00 am EST Update
A source close to the Knicks indicated New York may also have a potential trade partner in the Houston Rockets, who are eager to move John Wall. Like Walker, Wall has had his share of injuries that have factored heavily in him not playing at the level that made him an All-Star from 2014 to 2018. In fact, Wall hasn’t played in an NBA game since April 23, 2021. And while Wall not playing in Houston was agreed upon by both sides earlier this season, he and the Rockets are reportedly having conversations about a return to the active roster.
It was the first meeting of the teams since the dustup between Jokic and Miami’s Markieff Morris on Nov. 8. Morris committed a hard take foul that the Nuggets felt was overzealous; Jokic responded with a shove into Morris’ back. Morris has now missed 11 games with what the Heat have described as a neck injury. Jokic said he hasn’t talked to Morris since. Heat fans booed Jokic every time he touched the ball, and the reigning MVP didn’t seem to mind. “I played in Serbia, brother,” Jokic said.
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Storyline: Jokic-Morris Beef
Jokic, 26, has not talked with Morris since the shoving leading to him receiving a one-game suspension. His adversary has been sidelined with a neck injury missing the next 11 games. His brothers, Strahinja and Nemanja, were in attendance, as promised. They were sitting behind the Nuggets bench. “To be honest, they were coming to Miami every year that was possible. They missed the last couple of years because of COVID with no fans,” the reigning NBA MVP explained, “It is very cool to have them by your side.”
Among the people who have reached out to Blake Griffin since the Nets benched the veteran center/forward has been DeAndre Jordan, whom Steve Nash sat last season for more than a month. Griffin cannot help the team on the court, so he is trying to see how he can contribute from afar. “I have had great examples, DeAndre last year — he is a guy that I talked to, that reached out,” Griffin said Monday at practice, his first time speaking publicly since the Nets minimized his role. “A lot of the guys from last year reached out. [Jordan] did a really great job with it. I told him that. That is how I am going to try to do it as well.” Griffin said he understands why LaMarcus Aldridge is starting over him, but the outright benching came as a surprise. “LA has been playing unbelievable,” Griffin said of Aldridge. “So I totally get starting him, especially [with] Joe [Harris] out. “Being completely out of it though, I didn’t necessarily see that coming.”
Jonas Valanciunas wasn’t exactly a marksman when he entered the NBA in 2012. In fact, in his first five seasons in the league, he went 1-of-4 from 3-point range. But those days are long gone. Valanciunas hit his first seven 3-pointers on Monday night — all in the first half — as he helped lead the New Orleans Pelicans to a 123-104 win over the LA Clippers. The 6-foot-11, 265-pound bruiser has slowly started to add the three-point shot to his game since 2017, but he’s never had a night like Tuesday when he scored a career-high 39 points to go along with 15 rebounds. “Guys were calling him Dirk Valanciunas,” Pelicans coach Willie Green said, referencing Dallas Mavericks great Dirk Nowitzki. “But we want him shooting the ball when he’s open and mixing it in. He still wants to go to the post, which I love about him. He’s a physical guy. But just explaining to him how it’s going to open our offense up with his ability to shoot the ball the way he can, it was amazing to see tonight.”