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Old 07-13-2012, 10:39 PM   #10369
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Originally Posted by COLUMBIANA View Post
Oft-injured Oden wants to play this season

Greg Oden, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2007 draft, has missed 312 of 394 games in his NBA career. (Craig Mitchelldyer-US PRESSWIRE)
July 12, 2012

BLUE LIGHT SPECIALS: Heat President Pat Riley may have even more up his sleeve when it comes to free agents.
Injury-riddled Greg Oden could be returning to the NBA this season.
That’s the word from Oden’s agent, Mike Conley, who got a call earlier this week from Oden. He said his client has changed his tune from wanting to take this season off.
“(Oden) called me, and he was kind of excited,’’ Conley said Thursday in a phone interview with FOX Sports Florida. “I think he’s motivated …. He wants to play. He had said he wanted to take this season off, but he’s backed off from that …. He’s open to playing this season. I think he will play this season.’’
Oden, the star-crossed center who was taken No. 1 in the 2007 NBA draft by Portland ahead of No. 2 Kevin Durant, hasn’t played in an NBA game since Dec. 5, 2009. Out of 394 possible games in his NBA career, he’s missed 312.
Oden has had five surgeries on both his knees since entering the NBA, including two surgeries last February, one being his third microfracture procedure. He was waived by the Trail Blazers last March, making him a free agent.
Oden was quoted in a Grantland article last May about his plan to take the entire 2012-13 season off. But Oden told Conley this week about the change in his thinking.
“He’s starting to work out,’’ Conley said of Oden, who was recently cleared for workouts, feeling better about his situation. “He’s excited. You can tell he’s getting antsy. At the end of the day, I want him to finish out his NBA career. He’s still pretty young (24).’’
Conley, who said the former Ohio State star is committed to regular workouts this summer in Columbus, Ohio, said there’s still no timetable as to what point next season he believes Oden will be able to play. He said seven NBA teams, which he declined to name, have been keeping in regular touch with him, but Conley doesn’t anticipate it will be until the fall before there are any serious negotiations.
“We want to get to the point where he’s more healthy and can show teams what he can do (in workouts),’’ Conley said. “There’s still no timetable, and that’s the beauty of him being on his own. He doesn’t have to give anybody a timetable.''
Conley said he has not heard from the Miami Heat at all since Oden was waived. But he said Oden has interest in the Heat if they ever were to be interested.
“Obviously, if the Heat wanted him, who wouldn’t want to play for the Heat?’’ Conley said of the defending champions. “That goes without saying. They have roster spots and a need (at center). But it’s too early to say about where he might play.’’
Conley said Oden splits his time between his hometown of Indianapolis and Columbus. Conley said he’s now taking summer classes at Ohio State, which he led to the NCAA title game in his only season there of 2006-07.
Obviously, Oden has had plenty of down moments due to all his injuries. But Conley said Oden has never talked about the possibility of retiring.
For now, Conley said Oden is as excited as he’s been in a long time. He pointed out it was Oden who called him unsolicited to express a willingness to play this season.
“He’s going to sign somewhere,’’ Conley said. “He’s going to get healthy and be coming back.’’
Can you read?

Originally Posted by OlympiQ View Post
Here's a story from CBS sports about this

Last week, Oden admitted to becoming an alcoholic during his time with the Portland Trail Blazers and expressed plans to take the 2012-2013 season off completely.

You never want to deny a professional athlete the opportunity to make a comeback, but a return to the NBA would be a particularly unlikely accomplishment for Oden. He was released by the Blazers in March shortly after undergoing surgeries on both knees and he hasn't appeared in an NBA game since Dec. 5, 2009.

In a February interview with, Blazers Acting GM Chad Buchanan laid out in detail the medical issues facing Oden, which included a total of five knee surgeries, including three microfracture surgeries, plus blood clots in his left ankle and persistent pain and swelling during his rehabilitation process. Buchanan admitted that Oden never got particularly close to a return to the court during his time in Portland and that he was never cleared for full-contact basketball activities after his Dec. 2009 patella fracture. In that time, Oden underwent three additional knee surgeries and is currently facing months of rehabilitation from the most recent of those.

Of course, Oden wouldn't be Miami's first major reclamation project. The Heat brought in Eddy Curry after a number of workouts, and he appeared in 14 games for Miami this season, the first NBA action the former lottery pick had seen since the 2009-2010 season. Curry was thought to be unsalvageable and the Heat still somehow found a way, so it's accurate to say that nothing is impossible.

Signing Oden at this point is a no-risk proposition for any team. He comes at the league's minimum salary and requires nothing more than a roster spot and a medical staff. The question is whether there is any potential reward to be found. Unlike with Curry, this isn't just a matter of him going on a hardcore diet to drop 100 pounds. The question is whether his knees -- operated on time and again -- can take the kind of punishment required to get cleared to play basketball, let alone compete in NBA games night after night. Years of health setbacks suggest that a full return is a longshot, at best.

If Oden could fill even 10 minutes a night, signing him would be a worthwhile cause. Even if he lacked his old mobility, he's still tall, long and coordinated. Unfortunately, his recent rehabilitation history strongly suggests that even that type of modest contribution isn't likely.

I think that he is done- his knees cannot take the stress of even practicing, let alone an NBA game. It is such a waste, it seemed like he was going to be one of those iconic big men, but now we are left with the bitch Howard and baby Bynum.

Everytime you hear "I should be practicing again in a few months", he comes back with a new injury and it's "Greg Oden out 8-12 months". Don't get your homer hopes to high.
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