While San Antonio Spurs guard Manu Ginobili hasn’t announced his return date, looks like the other injured Southwest Division heavyweight knows when he’ll be returning. Fox Sports Tennessee is reporting that Zach Randolph has set a March 2nd return date.
“We’re pretty sure he’s going to come back this season playing with a protective brace,” Orthopedic surgeon Fred Azar said of the 30-year-old Randolph, who reported to the team this season in the best shape of his career. “But we won’t let him go back until the MCL is completely healed. The key thing for him is staying in shape with his conditioning as he does the rehab simultaneously. We expect him to go back to playing with a protective brace.”
Randolph will have missed almost half the season if he comes back on that March 2nd date against the Raptors. The Grizz have been treading water since Randolph went down, but when he gets back they could be in really good shape. Last year, the Grizzlies looked great when their fourth best big was Hamed Haddadi. Now it’s Dante Cunningham or Maurice Speights. That’s what we call an upgrade.
You may have noticed Dr. Azar saying Z-Bo was going to come back wearing a protective brace. How well he adjusts to that brace just may determine how well the Grizzlies do later this season.