Portland guard CJ McCollum continues to recover from a left mid-foot fracture and has been cleared for contact practice, it was announced today by Neil Olshey, Trail Blazers president of basketball operations. McCollum will be reevaluated later next week.
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Aaron J. Fentress: CJ McCollum is out of his walking boot and will be evaluated again in two more weeks, the team just announced. #RipCity
Chris Haynes: Portland Trail Blazers say CJ McCollum will be re-evaluated in four weeks with a small hairline fracture to the lateral cuneiform in his left foot and a mid-foot sprain.
Shams Charania: Trail Blazers star CJ McCollum has a fractured left foot and will miss an extended period of time, sources tell @TheAthletic @Stadium .
Sean Highkin: Terry Stotts doesn’t have a timeframe for how long CJ McCollum might be out. He won’t play tomorrow night vs. San Antonio. Beyond that TBD.
Casey Holdahl: “Good, it’s progressing well… Got a little plan together from a rehab standpoint to kind of make sure everything is in place.” — @CJMcCollum regarding the vertebral fracture he suffered in the bubble, says he’ll return to “full activity” next month.
Marc J. Spears: Blazers guard CJ McCollum says his back fracture won’t need surgery and he could resume normal activities after two months of rest.
Jamie Hudson: Blazers Injurt Report for Game 1 vs. Lakers: Zach Collins (left ankle inflammation) and F Nassir Little (dehydration recovery) are out; CJ McCollum (vertebral fracture) is available for Tuesday’s game.
In between games, McCollum said that he received treatment on his back “all the time.” He took ice baths as late a 1 a.m. after games. And considering he has labored through ankle, knee and chest injuries this season, McCollumn willingly accepted the pain would not dissipate. “It was all mental. I was fortunate enough to have an injury I can play through, and our training staff has done a great job of monitoring it,” McCollum said. “You understand you’re playing more than just yourself. We have a chance to do special things as a unit and I want to be a part of it.”
When McCollum’s shots did not initially fall, he felt validated that his approach still worked. Though he conceded the back pain has affected his shot, McCollum still labored through the adjustments. “I’m comfortable with failing. That is what drives me,” McCollum said. “I could miss all of these shots and I’d be here talking to you the same way and going on with my day the same way because I prepared. That’s the biggest thing in this sport. When you prepare, you have extra confidence. I think the team is confident in me. One, they’ve seen me deliver. Two, they know how I work.”
Through every superb or uneven performance, McCollum stubbornly remained available. “His back has been messed up the whole time since the first game, but he gave no excuses,” Lillard said. “He didn’t sit out or look for a way out. He just stayed with it. I know who I’m stepping on the court with, and there’s a reason I got the faith and trust in him that I do. People saw his character and who he truly is. He’s still hurt. But when it comes down to it, he rises to the occasion. That’s who he is and what I expect from him.”
Jeff Stotts: Re: CJ McCollum: Transverse process fractures of the spine aren’t unheard of in professional sports. Cam Newton & Tony Romo endured the injury while NBA players, including Hedo Turkoglu & Mike Conley, have sustained the injury in recent season.
Lillard’s confidence and appreciation for McCollum playing through pain when the Blazers need him as they make their final playoff push is yet another layer of the duo’s special relationship. He’s a little bit banged up. He’s making no excuses or looking for no way out. He’s thuggin’ it out for the team and being out there for us, and fortunate for us, him doing that meant he was out there for those last free throws and came through for us. — Trail Blazers All-Star Damian Lillard on CJ McCollum
CJ McCollum had a rough night from the field for the Trail Blazers Tuesday, but he’s playing with a serious injury.
At this point in the season, the seven-year shooting guard realizes that his ankle most likely won’t be back to a 100 percent. “[It’s] as good as it’s going to be,” McCollum said. “I feel good. I’m moving well. I can cut now. Last game I did some testing and it just wasn’t ready. I wasn’t able to do some of things I wanted to do, chasing, cutting on it. So, I’ll do some more testing on it tomorrow, but if I feel how I feel now, and I’m pain free on most of my movements like I am now, I like my chances.”
Blazers head coach Terry Stotts emphasized that they won’t make a decision on McCollum’s availability against the Pacers until game day. “He looked good. So we’ll see how he feels tomorrow. We’re hopeful that he’ll play, but that won’t be decided until tomorrow,” Stotts said.
Jason Quick: Blazers announce CJ McCollum is out tonight with sprained ankle. It will be his 3rd straight game he’s missed.
The Portland Trail Blazers are uncertain about the severity of the left ankle sprain that forced shooting guard CJ McCollum to exit Friday night’s 120-112 loss to the Dallas Mavericks early in the second quarter. “Usually, the second day is the worst,” McCollum said. “So we’ll see how it feels tomorrow. Get some treatment, try to compress it and see how it feels.”
Casey Holdahl: CJ McCollum (illness) is out for tonight’s game vs. Heat.
Jason Quick: Blazers announce that CJ McCollum and Seth Curry will be available tonight against Denver. Gary Trent Jr. (sick) is out.
Nick Kosmider: CJ McCollum will play “limited minutes” tonight for the Trail Blazers, his first action since the middle of March.
Kerry Eggers: Terry Stotts says Blazers coaches will have a discussion Monday about how they’ll handle @CJ McCollum’s playing status for final 2 regular-season games against Lakers and Kings. I’m guessing as long as tonight’s game vs. Denver goes well, CJ will sit out one of final two #RipCity
Joe Freeman: CJ McCollum is doing some (very) light ball-handling and passing work after the Blazers’ practice under the watchful eye of team Health and Performace guru Jess Elis.
McCollum, who is averaging more than 21 points a game for Portland, has a strained left knee. He’ll be re-evaluated next week, but at this point there’s no timetable for his return. The injury comes at an inopportune time for the Blazers, who sit in fourth in the tight Western Conference standings with 12 games left to secure home-court advantage. “Mentally, I don’t want him to have to rush it,” Lillard said about McCollum’s return. “When he does come back I want him to be himself and be healthy, so in my mind, we’re going to finish the regular season without him, maybe the last couple of games of the regular season. I think that’s how I should think of it, knowing that we have to have a great effort for these last 12 games, planning on not having him out there.”
Joe Freeman: Damian Lillard on CJ McCollum’s left knee injury and when his backcourt mate might return: “I don’t want him to have to rush it. And when he does come back, I want him to be himself and be healthy. So, in my mind, we’re going to finish the regular season without him.”
Adrian Wojnarowski: Sources: Portland guard CJ McCollum has a popliteus strain in his left knee. He will be re-examined in a week.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Best possible news for McCollum and Blazers, who avoided a serious injury.
Adrian Wojnarowski: Portland guard @CJ McCollum will undergo an MRI on his left knee on Sunday, league sources tell ESPN.
The Blazers said McCollum had a “left leg injury” after X-rays were negative. He will undergo an MRI on Sunday morning. McCollum said he did not hear his knee pop but felt immediate pain and discomfort in it. “I don’t know the extent of it,” McCollum said. “I don’t know if it’s lateral . I don’t know. I just know that it’s not normal.”
“I went up for a layup, a left-hand layup, and big fella (former Blazer Jakob Poeltl) blocked it,” McCollum said. “I landed on my foot, kind of trapped my foot on the ground, felt my knee kind of twist. I was in pain. It hurts. You never want to get hurt, man. Not ever, especially at this point in the season. There’s nothing I can do about it but rehab and see what they say. I can walk, but I’m not sure what the extent of it is. Obviously, on the replay it’s hard to kind of see it because my foot is trapped and his body is there. But there’s some discomfort, some pain in certain areas. So we’ll see what happens. It’s definitely around my knee, but I don’t know the extent of it. I don’t know if it’s lateral. I don’t know. I just know that it’s not normal.”
McCollum exited under assistance with 7:03 remaining in the third quarter. He remained on the court for a few minutes clutching his left leg in great pain after tumbling out of bounds when his driving left-handed layup was blocked by Jakob Poeltl. McCollum had his left foot trapped under Poeltl’s right foot as both landed, leading the Blazers guard to tumble out of bounds next to the stanchion. “I feel bad for C.J. I hope he’s OK,” San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich said. “He’s a great player and a great kid.”
Portland Trail Blazers star CJ McCollum received a PRP injection during the offseason to relieve pain and alleviate minor swelling in his right knee, league sources told Yahoo Sports. McCollum, 27, has returned to playing at a high level after receiving the treatment about four months ago, scoring nine points in 12 minutes in Portland’s preseason opener against the Toronto Raptors on Saturday.
McCollum experienced persistent soreness during the latter part of the 2017-18 campaign and sought a remedy at the conclusion of the season, sources said. The Blazers’ season ended April 21 after a first-round playoff sweep by the New Orleans Pelicans. An MRI revealed no structural damage and he was administered a PRP treatment early in the offseason in Los Angeles, sources said.
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Those numbers made Beal an All-Star Game starter for the first time in his career. It’s a great accomplishment, one that only 10 players receive each year. So, does that mean he has reached his peak? “I feel like I can get a whole lot better,” Beal told NBC Sports Washington. “I still feel like I haven’t really tapped into that elite, elite, elite level. I feel like I’m still on the way there. I wouldn’t say I’m crazy far off, but I feel like I’m pretty good and it’s picking up.”
Clearly, it is not money that motivates him. “I think it’s just who I am. I’m always my toughest critic. I always just push myself to be better than what I was before. It’s kind of like I’m just competing against myself in a way. I don’t have that enemy or guy around the league that I look up to and I want to be better than. Like, ‘oh, his numbers…’ I don’t have that,” he said. “I kind of go up against myself on a nightly basis, on a yearly basis. How can I be better than what I was before? What do I need to improve on? I have just kind of always had that since I was younger. That’s always kind of stuck with me.”
There are also Beal’s free throw numbers. He’s averaging career-high attempts (8.2/g) and shooting a career-best percentage (90.2%). Just three years ago, Beal was averaging 4.5 attempts and shooting 79.1 percent. “My goal coming into this year was to be 90 [percent],” Beal said. “I tell myself every time I step up to the line, I say 90. I just say 90 to myself. I’m shooting with confidence, stepping up and then knocking them down. They’re free points.”
In the earliest days of a decorated and illustrious career, before the 17 consecutive All-Star Games, the MVP honors in three of them, and before he became as much a fixture of the midseason extravaganza as the ball itself, LeBron James fell victim to the most plebian of NBA slights. He was an All-Star snub. “Still kinda irks me a little bit,” James said this week. “But I got over it.”
Coaches in the East voted on the rest of the roster. In later years, the league would give coaches the authority to fill out the roster as they saw fit, but in those days, they were still obligated to meet positional needs. Jamaal Magloire, who was averaging a double-double with New Orleans, made the one All-Star team of his career. Same for Metta Sandiford Artest (then Ron Artest) and Milwaukee guard Michael Redd. “Jamaal Magloire is an All-Star. LeBron James is not,” Hall of Fame basketball writer Marc Stein opined in a column for ESPN.com. “Nah, there’s nothing wrong with the rules the NBA uses for voting in its All-Star reserves.”
Reached by phone this week, Sandiford Artest said, “you could have made an argument for LeBron,” but the fact that he was a rookie and the Cavaliers were not in playoff contention made it tough. “I’m not going to say he didn’t deserve it,” Sandiford Artest told The Athletic, “because his first game against me he had 25 points. That was a lot of points against me. Nobody was scoring 25, let alone a rookie. When he did that to me, I’m like, this is insane. You literally gave 25 points to the best wing defender in the league.”