Nightmare on Flatbush.
The Nets announced late Friday that D’Angelo Russell had underwent arthroscopic surgery to “remove loose bodies” in his left knee. Russell injured a contusion of his left knee last Saturday. The Nets anticipate Russell will return this season but are not offering any timetable.
The Nets medical update said, “updates regarding Russell’s return will be issued as appropriate.” Sean Marks told the media Friday that he expects Russell will be back this season, but declined to provide an estimate, noting “everyone is different.”
Dr. Riley Williams III, the Nets medical director, performed the surgery.
Sean Marks spoke with D'Angelo Russell: “It’s definitely frustrating for D’Angelo. I was just with him before. He’s going into this as another challenge. He knows he’ll bounce back from this and we have no doubts in our mind that he’ll be better and stronger than he was before.”— Anthony Puccio (@APOOCH) November 17, 2017
Marks: “It’s an arthroscopic surgery, so the plan would be for him to return this season.”— Anthony Puccio (@APOOCH) November 17, 2017
Marks on the injury itself: “This was a direct correlation to the incident that happened in Utah. The good thing is he’s young enough and he’s certainly going to bounce back from something like this. We’re not too concerned in that regard.”— Anthony Puccio (@APOOCH) November 17, 2017
Marks said the Nets are likely to apply for a Disabled Player Exception for Jeremy Lin, who was ruled out after opening night when he suffered a ruptured patellar tendon. Since the Nets don’t anticipate Russell will be out for the season, they would not be able to apply for a DPE for him. A Lin DPE would permit the Nets to sign or trade for a player making up to $6 million this season.
Kenny Atkinson said the Nets don’t anticipate bringing anyone up from the Long Island Nets, saying the team is “happy with our roster.”
Atkinson mentions Dinwiddie, Whitehead, LeVert and Kilpatrick as guys that will have to step up following the news to D’Angelo Russell. #Nets— Anthony Puccio (@APOOCH) November 17, 2017
Atkinson said he thinks Russell’s mental makeup will help him in his rehab.
Atkinson: He’s a positive, positive person, which I really enjoy being around. I talked to him today. I think anybody that has a little injury, these guys at this level think, ‘I want to get back. I want to help the team.’ He’s engaged, he’s involved, hasn’t distanced himself."— Anthony Puccio (@APOOCH) November 17, 2017
The loss of Lin and now Russell will mean more minutes for Spencer Dinwiddie and Caris LeVert in the Nets backcourt as well as time for Isaiah Whitehead.
Russell has a history of issues with both his knees. He missed 11 games with the Lakers in November and December last season with left knee soreness. There was no surgery, but he needed a platelet-rich plasma injection at one point. Then he sat out three more games in late January with an injured right knee.
This season, Russell sat out the Nets big win over the Cavs in late October with a sprained right knee. He was back the next game.
At the time, Atkinson played down the injury, played up the Nets cautiousness as an organization.
For the full audio:
- Nets leading scorer D'Angelo Russell undergoes arthroscopic surgery on left knee - AP
- D’Angelo Russell has knee surgery, will miss extended time - Brian Lewis - New York Post
- D’Angelo Russell has arthroscopic surgery on left knee, Nets say - Greg Logan - Newsday