NBA Rumor: Damian Lillard Injury

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But now, in the second of three scrimmage games, Portland will be without their point guard Damian Lillard, who is dealing with inflammation in his left foot. Stotts says Lillard had an x-ray on his left foot. The x-rays came back negative. From the sounds of it, it seems the inflammation is at the bottom of Lillard’s left foot. He did have an x-ray. The x-ray was negative. He just has some inflammation. I don’t expect it to be a long-term deal. Hopefully he’ll be able to play our last scrimmage. I think it’s a little bit on the bottom of his foot, but I’m not quite sure about that, but I think it is. — Trail Blazers coach Terry Stotts

Star point guard Damian Lillard rolled his left ankle in the fourth quarter and later had to be carted from the locker room to the team bus following the Blazers’ 115-109 loss to the lowly Mavericks at American Airlines Center. With about five minutes left in Tuesday’s game, Lillard jumped to make a pass in the lane and landed on the foot of Dallas center Sal Mejri. His ankle rolled with all his weight on it. He played the final five minutes of the game with a slight hobble, but he said once the game ended, more pain and swelling rushed to the ankle.

“It feels way better, I went through a full speed workout with no limitations,” said Lillard after Saturday’s practice in Minneapolis. “I would have did our stuff with the group where we did some defensive stuff against a shell, not really full contact. I would have did that but I didn’t want to get in the way of any of the guys that’s going to be playing, so I stayed out of that. I did the shooting stuff before we did that, I did my own little workout at the end for the last 20 minutes or so, full speed normal stuff. It felt pretty good. Some stuff, it didn’t hurt but I wasn’t really comfortable with it. It wasn’t completely comfortable, so just going to keep working out and keep working that swelling out, that soreness out, trying to get back. I’m not going to rush it, at this point I might as well wait until completely ready to go.”
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April 13, 2021 | 1:16 pm EDT Update

Mark Cuban on play-in tournament: 'An enormous mistake'

Hours after Luka Doncic criticized the idea of the NBA’s play-in tournament, Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban told ESPN that the concept is “an enormous mistake,” especially due to this season’s compressed schedule. “I get why the NBA is doing it,” Cuban said in a series of messages to ESPN. “But if we are going to be creative because of COVID, we should go straight up 1-20 and let the bottom 4 play in. This is the year particularly to do it since the 10 games cut [from the normal 82-game schedule] were in conference.
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“The worst part of this approach is that it doubles the stress of the compressed schedule. Rather than playing for a playoff spot and being able to rest players as the standings become clearer, teams have to approach every game as a playoff game to either get into or stay in the top 6 since the consequences, as Luka said, are enormous. So players are playing more games and more minutes in fewer days.”
“In a regular season of 82 games where we aren’t playing 30-plus games in 6 weeks, then it might have been OK,” Cuban told ESPN. “But the compression of so many games into so few days makes this an enormous mistake. “If we had gone 1 to 16, with the top 12 in, it still would have been rough, but there would have been more separation between play-in and the top 12. This is a season where we have to rest high-usage players. We have no choice. And that can and will have consequences.”