Portland Trail Blazers: 5 bold predictions for rest of the offseason

PORTLAND, OR - APRIL 16: Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers fires up the crowd during the second half of Game Two of the Western Conference quarterfinals against the Oklahoma City Thunder during the 2019 NBA Playoffs Moda Center on April 16, 2019 in Portland, Oregon. The Blazers won 114-94. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images) (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images)
PORTLAND, OR - APRIL 16: Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers fires up the crowd during the second half of Game Two of the Western Conference quarterfinals against the Oklahoma City Thunder during the 2019 NBA Playoffs Moda Center on April 16, 2019 in Portland, Oregon. The Blazers won 114-94. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images) (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
4 of 6
Next
Portland Trail Blazers
The Portland Trail Blazers look on during a game against the Oklahoma City Thunder during the 2019 NBA Playoffs (Photo by Sam Forencich/NBAE via Getty Images) /

3. Nurkic expedites his recovery process

As far as breaking your leg in half goes, Jusuf Nurkic got pretty lucky. Despite fracturing both his tibia and fibula, he sustained no permanent damage to the nerves or muscle tissue in his leg. Jeff Feinblatt (a local orthopedic surgeon that specializes in lower body injuries) described the injury in detail during an interview with Colin Hoobler of The Oregonian.

"“This injury is typically treated with a rod placed within the larger bone (tibia). This allows early weight bearing, although healing of the bone can take four months or longer. One study found 88 percent of patients returned to sport (recreational and competitive) after treatment of a tibia fracture with a rod at an average of 41 weeks.” -Feinblatt"

Considering Nurkic sustained the injury on March 25, he should be well into the recovery process by now. And from what we’ve seen so far, that appears to be true. We are now 168 days removed from his injury, and means he should in theory be on a timeline to return in early January. Now, it should be noted that this goes against the early February date that has been mentioned by Neil Olshey himself.

Depending on the outlook of the Portland Trail Blazers season in January, they may be inclined to bring him back a month early — as Feinblatt suggested he should be ready for. The NBA trade deadline is also February 7, so that would also provide the added benefit of evaluating Whiteside’s performance and deciding if they should hang on to him, or potentially swing him for a star if Nurkic can hold his own.