Portland Trail Blazers power forward LaMarcus Aldridge will miss Tuesday’s matchup with the Milwaukee Bucks, and is still considered doubtful to return by Thursday’s matchup with the Washington Wizards. This should come as no big surprise, since Aldridge stung his lower back pretty badly last Wednesday against the San Antonio Spurs.
“It was just so painful, I just felt like something was broken. I couldn’t move and it was just a really, really sharp pain going through my backside. So I was just in pain and I was freaking out, really.” – Via Joe Freeman, OregonLive
The Bucks aren’t the most challenging competition, so I’m glad that Head Coach Terry Stotts is comfortable resting his marquee player against the worst team in the NBA (13-54). The Wizards, however, will not go down easy. The fact that Aldridge is unlikely to play on Thursday indicates a degree of severity to the injury we were hoping to avoid. The Trail Blazers need him back ASAP to secure favorable positioning for the looming post-season.
Of most concern is that Aldridge’s timetable for return remains open-ended. Aldridge will probably miss these next two games, but what about the ones after them? A “doubtful” listing does not inspire confidence that Aldridge will take the floor in Charlotte on Saturday. With no alarmist intentions, I’d hazard a guess that we don’t see Aldridge play until Monday against the Miami Heat. Time will tell.
In his stead, Dorell Wright will continue to start at power forward for the Blazers. Wright has averaged 14 points and 4 rebounds as a starter since Aldridge’s most recent injury. Though individual efforts are more than welcome, Portland is concerned with wins more than anything right now. It doesn’t matter how well Wright is shooting or how well Nicolas Batum is rebounding, or anything else really if the Trail Blazers can’t come away with the W.