Team doctors reported Sunday that while Victor Oladipo’s sprained wrist is improving, he will not return Monday night vs. Atlanta. After crashing hard to the court during the first quarter of Oklahoma City’s Nov. 11 win against Boston, Oladipo has missed three consecutive contests due to injury.
With Oladipo sidelined, the Thunder has started both Jerami Grant and Anthony Morrow with mixed results. Overall, Oklahoma City is 1-2 without its second-leading scorer in the lineup. While the Thunder was defeated handily by Portland and Utah sans Oladipo, Oklahoma City trounced Phoenix 114-101 Saturday night.
Since exiting last Sunday’s contest, the Thunder’s second-leading scorer (16.1 ppg) has yet to return to practice.
Thunder Head Coach Billy Donovan recently explained Oladipo’s situation to reporters stating:
“He’s at practice. He’s not in practice. (Oladipo) Says he’s feeling better. Still having difficulty, I think, catching and shooting. When that goes away and those symptoms subside (so) that he would be available I really don’t know, but in talking to him today, he feels like he is getting better.”
When pressed concerning his team’s potential starting lineup vs. Atlanta, Coach Donovan had this response:
“(Monday) I could say to those guys here even in shootaround, ‘Listen guys, when we get to the arena we’ll talk about the starting lineup. They’re professional. I think that they all understand they got to be ready to play, and whoever is starting in the game, there’ll be enough time for them to get themselves ready to play.”
Regarding the team’s starting two-guard scenario, Oklahoma City clearly functioned best on each end with Morrow starting and Grant resuming his natural role as bench producer. However, who Donovan ultimately chooses to utilize as the opening two-guard vs. Atlanta will not be known until tipoff.
Check back with WTLC for all the latest information concerning Victor Oladipo’s injury status.