Former Michigan, and current Brooklyn Nets guard, Caris LeVert appears to be getting back on the road to recovery after a horrific injury sidelined him earlier in the season. LeVert dislocated his foot against Minnesota Timberolves in November, with the injury appearing much more serious than the diagnoses suggested after the game. LeVert was having a breakout year with the Nets before the injury setback occurred.
However, that breakout season appears to be continuing soon as Nets’ head coach Kenny Atkinson told reporters this weekend that LeVert is back on the hardwood preparing to return to the franchise.
I know he’s in the gym shooting. I’ll say that. That’s about as much as I can say. But progressing, on schedule and looking forward to having him back,” Atkinson told reporters.
Both LeVert and the Nets’ organization breathed a sigh of relief after finding out the injury wasn’t as severe as it first appeared. Regardless, it’s a setback that neither side wanted nor needed at this time in the season. For LeVert, there is more relief at what could have been than frustration.
“The pain level felt like a regular sprain, and I knew I kind of fell on the side of my ankle,” LeVert told reporters after the injury. “And obviously, when I looked at it, I was like, ‘Wow, that’s messed up.”
“Initially, I was frustrated, felt kind of defeated,” LeVert said. “I felt like it wasn’t fair. But everything happens for a reason. It’s not a very, very, very serious injury to the point where the way I play basketball will be different. I feel like I’ll still be the same player. I’ll be a better player when I come back. I feel like maybe the time off is the best thing for me, maybe best for the team.”
LeVert’s injury was severe enough to get a comment from his collegiate head coach John Beilein who, at the time of the injury, was happy to hear that the injury wasn’t as severe as the replays had suggested it to be.
“Caris and I have been through a lot together,” Beilein told reporters in November. “From his recruitment all the way to two very promising years that were just cut short. It was like, why does this happen? I think the warning was don’t (watch the video). I don’t like to see those things, I don’t like to see them so I wouldn’t look at it. Then I got the call this morning that, you know what, there’s no fractures. As a result, if there are no fractures then there’s a chance that he could be back this year. He has a bit of a Gumby, bendable guy. I’m just so happy because, apparently, it was just so ugly to watch. Talking with him on the phone today, you could tell he was so relieved that this is not one of those season-ending injuries that he’s seen twice.”
LeVert played with the Wolverines program from 2012-2016 and was selected No. 20 0verall in the first round of the 2016 NBA Draft.