Brooklyn Nets guard Caris LeVert talked to the media about his injury and recovery, but as has become the norm for the team, no timetable was discussed.
The media heard from Brooklyn Nets guard Caris LeVert on Monday and the inevitable question of LeVert’s timetable for a return came up. LeVert’s answer did not include a timetable and the discussion was cut off by the Nets’ public relations staff.
This isn’t really a surprise to anyone who has followed the team since the arrival of general manager Sean Marks in 2016. The organization is notoriously tight-lipped about recovery projections and has often described injuries as “minor” before a player misses a month or more.
From Michael Scotto of The Athletic:
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When Rondae Hollis-Jefferson injured his hip in August, the injury was described as minor. RHJ didn’t participate in a full practice in training camp until almost two months had passed since the injury and missed the first regular season game while awaiting medical clearance.
The regular-season opener was about 10 weeks out.
Similarly, Treveon Graham‘s hamstring strain that he sustained in the second game of the season back on Oct. 19 was mostly downplayed.
The Nets denied the accuracy of a report from Shams Charania in late October that said Graham’s injury was not a strain but a hamstring tear and that Graham would be out until after Christmas.
Coach Kenny Atkinson denied the report, per Bryan Fonseca of NetsDaily.
The common thread to all of these injury reports — as well as injuries earlier this season to Shabazz Napier, Allen Crabbe and Rodions Kurucs — is that the Nets simply don’t discuss timetables, not even broad estimates.
That can be frustrating for fans. There are estimates out there from outside sources that say LeVert could be back in as soon as eight weeks. There are other medical sources that project the time needed to return could be as much as double that.
In the end, it’s risk management and attempting to manage expectations. Being the wizened veteran of this process that I am, I’ve seen timetables blow up in the face of teams when they aren’t met.
Player A injuries a body part. The team says Player A should be back on the court in between four and 10 weeks. Player A is still out after five or six weeks and fans are demanding answers, even though that time frame is still well within the confines of the original estimate.
Human nature dictates that we stop reading at the first figure and set it in stone in our minds. apparently.
With the Nets, I’ve adopted a strategy to limit the frustration. Until the injury report is changed to reflect a player listed as questionable, they’re just out. Once they’re questionable, it means they’re within a week of returning to action.
Ultimately, as frustrating as it may be, the organization is under no obligation to provide a detailed timeline for injury recovery, no matter how nice it would be to have even just a very rough estimate.
So with the Brooklyn Nets, it appears no news really is no news … until they tell us a guy is now questionable. Not a perfect solution, and certainly inelegant, but at this point we should be familiar enough with the organization’s handling of injuries to not expect to be told a timetable.