O.J. Mayo broke down in tears when he heard the NBA was going to ban him for at least two years for a failed drug test, and he surely would have cried even harder if he had known the embarrassment, loneliness and aimlessness that would follow.
After July 1, 2018, Mayo will be eligible to apply for reinstatement to the NBA. Per league guidelines, both the NBA and the National Basketball Players Association must approve his return, and the two sides can consider a host of factors to weigh that decision, including the circumstances surrounding Mayo’s dismissal, his personal conduct during the ban, his character and morality, whether he has completed a treatment program, and whether he’s a “suitable role model for youth.” Mayo must also be able to “demonstrate by proof of random urine testing” that he has not failed any marijuana or drug tests for a year prior to his reinstatement application.
“I want to go back to what I left [in Milwaukee],” Mayo said, when asked for his dream destination. “I was real close with Jason Kidd. That was the best relationship I had with a coach besides [Dwaine Barnes]. I had great relationships with Giannis [Antetokounmpo] and Khris Middleton. I was comfortable there. I felt like I let them down, cheated them for two years. They paid me $8 million to be, in my eyes, a subpar player. They invested millions of dollars for me to be on top of my s—, and when you’re not on top of your s—, it shows. I’ll be 30 next summer. If they just give me the chance, I can make it up. I owe them.”
His checklist is coming together. The ankle is no longer a hindrance. Johnson says Mayo’s rhythm, shooting touch and handle are NBA-ready, leaving his full-court conditioning as the only open basketball question. Gaines marvels at Mayo’s physical transformation, noting that he’s quickly closing in on his ideal playing weight.
Source: Ben Golliver of The Crossover
D’Angelo Russell Has Arthroscopic Surgery on Left Knee, No Timetable for Return
Brooklyn Nets guard D’Angelo Russell had arthroscopic surgery on his left knee Friday.
The procedure was performed by Dr. Riley Williams III at the Hospital for Special Surgery. No timetable for his return was announced.
“It’s an arthroscopic surgery, so the plan would be for him to return this season,” general manager Sean Marks said. “It’s definitely frustrating for D’Angelo. 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.”
Russell missed time due to knee injuries last season, but this latest knee injury was not related.
Russell has played in 12 games for Brooklyn this season with team-leading averages of 20.9 points and 5.7 assists.
Source: Associated Press via ESPN
Mike Conley Out Indefinitely with Sore Achilles, Heel
Memphis Grizzlies guard Mike Conley is out for an indefinite period because of soreness in his left Achilles and heel, the team announced Friday.
The Grizzlies did not provide a timetable for his return, saying only that they would provide an update in approximately two weeks.
“It’s unfortunate,” Grizzlies coach David Fizdale told reporters Friday. “But watching him play in pain like that and really trying to push through that stuff was worse to watch.”
Conley will undergo therapy to help in the healing process after consulting with physicians and the team’s medical staff.
The guard has started 12 of the Grizzlies’ first 14 games this season. Conley is averaging 17.1 points, 2.3 rebounds, 4.1 assists in his 11th NBA season. He has been playing an average of 31.1 minutes each game.
Derrick Rose Out at least Two More Weeks with Sprained Left Ankle
Cavaliers starting point guard Derrick Rose will miss at least the next two weeks with a sprained left ankle.
The Cavaliers say Rose had additional tests Friday at the Cleveland Clinic Sports Health Center. Rose’s ankle will be immobilized in a boot for the next week, and he will undergo “an extended treatment process over the next two to three weeks.”
“Just a jacked-up ankle,” Rose told ESPN. “I’m just trying to figure it out, bro. Right now, it’s just a jacked-up ankle. Just sore. I’m getting a lot of treatment for it, and tonight will be my first time wearing a boot. So I’ll wear this, for I don’t know how long, to see how it helps.”
Rose injured the ankle Oct. 20 at Milwaukee and missed four games, then returned, before missing Cleveland’s past four games.
Source: Dave McMenamin of ESPN