NBA training camps opened this week as players from all 30 teams are looking to sharpen their skills before the start of the 2022-23 regular season. Here are the latest happenings from around the league:
Chicago’s Ball Set To Undergo Second Knee Surgery
Chicago Bulls point guard Lonzo Ball is scheduled to have surgery for a second time since January on his left knee. After spending the summer in Los Angeles rehabbing and seeking several more opinions on the status of his injury, Ball says he still can’t run or jump without having pain. He’ll undergo another arthroscopic surgery on Wednesday for the third time in his career.
The team says Ball will be re-evaluated in four to six weeks and failed to put a timeline on his potential return to the lineup. However, the point guard says he believes he will return sometime this season and doesn’t think the injury will cause him to miss the entire campaign.
He said the surgery is exploratory to identify the issues causing the pain and then fix it. Team doctors have been trying to figure out the problem and decided that surgery is the only option right now.
Celtics Hope To Have Productive Season Without Udoka
The Boston Celtics opened training camp on Tuesday, with interim coach Joe Mazzulla taking over for the suspended Ime Udoka for the 2022-23 season. The team is eager to return to normal after the changes involved with the organization since the year-long suspension of their second-year head coach was handed down by the front office for his inappropriate relationship with a team staffer.
Mazzulla says he won’t change much about the team’s structure as they mirrored their workouts from last season in Tuesday’s first practice. He also will be looking for feedback from the players as often as he needs to so they are as comfortable as possible when dealing with the transition.
Mazzulla also mentioned that the team seemed eager to return to normal and put the coaching issue aside in this first practice. This is his fourth season with the team, and the players feel he understands where they need to improve to take that next step and win an NBA title next summer.
Nash Says He And Durant Are On Good Terms
On Tuesday, Brooklyn Nets head coach Steve Nash told reporters that he and Kevin Durant are on good terms. It was reported that the star forward gave team owner Joe Tsai a clear ultimatum when he requested a trade, saying he needed to pick between him or Nash and GM Sean Marks.
Durant first expressed concern when the team lost eleven straight games after he was injured last season. He also said that true championship teams should fight through injuries, which is not what he feels Nash did with the team while he was sidelined.
It’s unknown whether this contributed to his disappointment with Nash, but the coach said that he and Durant have worked out whatever issues they may have had. Many teams had an interest in signing him in the offseason, but the Nets didn’t see an attractive offer and weren’t going to let the perennial All-NBA forward leave town for nothing. In late August, Durant rescinded his trade request and is now focused on bringing the Nets a championship on one of the best teams in the Eastern Conference.