Victor Oladipo, who was traded to the Miami Heat on March 25, made his official debut with the team on April 1, and on April 8, the two-time All-Star limped off the court with an injury.
While the Heat notched a 110-104 win over the heavily depleted Los Angeles Lakers on Thursday night, Oladipo exited with 5:35 minutes left in the fourth quarter after missing the footing of his landing after a dunk. Sun Sentinel‘s Ira Winderman reported that “X-rays on Oladipo’s right knee came back negative” and will undergo an MRI on Friday.
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It’s reassuring to know that the 28-year-old’s X-rays didn’t show anything severely wrong with his right knee, but it’s hard to ignore the fact that Oladipo never fully recovered from rupturing the quadriceps tendon in that same knee on January 23, 2019. After undergoing surgery, Oladipo missed the rest of the 2018- 2019 NBA season and didn’t return to action until January 29, 2020.
The Heat were fully aware Oladipo was still not 100% when they acquired him from the Rockets and decided it was best that he only played one game when the team has back-to-backs. On April 3, Oladipo spoke about his recovery process. “One leg is stronger than the other,” he said. “So I have some hypertrophy in one leg than the other. So working my way back and finding my balance is something I’m continuing to work at.”
Before taking an awkward fall, Oladipo was putting on a great performance on April 8. He scored 18 points, with four rebounds, two assists, three steals, and a blocked shot.
Jimmy Butler & Bam Adebayo Need Oladipo to Return ASAP
While it’s frustrating for fans to see the team’s newest and most exciting addition get injured so soon, it’s an especially tough blow for his teammates. Heat’s team leader Jimmy Butler expressed concern for the guard following the team’s win on Thursday night as it seemed as if he was just finding his rhythm with the Heat.
“He was out there hoopin’. I’m happy for him,” Butler said. “Hopefully, he’s more and more in a rhythm and he’s OK. We definitely need that guy. We want him back.”
“Playing the way he played [Thursday], making shots, getting to the cup, getting to the line, getting everybody else involved, and, of course, playing defense, we’d always want that guy to be OK, all of our guys. But just to be here and have to leave the game, hopefully we hear good news.”
Bam Adebayo also hopes to his teammate back on the court as soon as possible. “You never want to see one of your brothers go down, so I’m glad he’s OK, at the end of the day,” Adebayo said, during the postgame media conference. “He came in, we walked in, he was congratulating us on the win I feel like he’s OK. He just had a little scare.”
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