Dallas Mavericks' No. 2 star Kristaps Porzingis had his NBA Playoffs debut cut short due to an unfortunate meniscus tear that required surgery after the season ended. It was a disappointing ending for the 'unicorn' big man's first season in Dallas, as he played as well as anyone could've hoped after not playing basketball for nearly two years after tearing his ACL while with the New York Knicks.
The next big issue? When will KP be back fully healthy?
"KP, we're going to make sure (his knee) is 100 percent before we put him out there. So that's going to be into the season before we are able to have him join us," Nelson said Monday on 105.3 The Fan's "K&C Masterpiece.''
The regular season is slated to start Dec. 22. At the same time, Nelson and the Mavs seem unworried about KP's availability shortly after that.
In 57 regular season games for the Mavs, Porzingis finished with averages of 20.4 points, 9.5 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 2.0 blocks while playing nearly 32 minutes per game. Those numbers don't tell the entire story for Porzingis' season, though, because he raised his play to an All-NBA level from January 31 through the end of the season, averaging 26.7 points, 10.5 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 2.1 bocks while flirting with 50/40/90 shooting efficiency.
Once Porzingis got back in his groove, he wasn't just good, he was outstanding. And if it hadn't been for a questionable Game 1 ejection, the Mavs might have pulled off a first round upset of the Los Angeles Clippers.
Dr. Rajpal Brar, DPT, who is an expert on these kinds of injuries, has a good idea of when we could potentially see Porzingis on the floor for the Mavs again.
"Typically, for high-level elite athletes who undergo a lateral meniscus repair, the average return timeline is about three-to-four months," says Dr. Brar.
So Dr. Brar suggests that Porzingis could potentially miss the first three weeks of the season.
Given that Luka Doncic figures to improve even further on his sophomore All-NBA First Team campaign, and assuming that the Mavs make other improvements to their roster this offseason, the team should be able to withstand not having Porzingis for a few weeks.
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Dr. Brar's full video breakdown of Porzingis' meniscus tear and recovery timetable can be viewed here: