Why read what others are saying about Michael Porter Jr? Watch him right here #Mizzou fans#MIZ
— Bill Pollock (@missourisports) February 9, 2018
Michael Porter Jr. says he feels fine. In fact, it is the best he has felt in a long time. When he meets with his doctors next week, he is hoping he is cleared to resume all basketball activities in practice. From there, Michael told me he would be ready to play right away, but that decision will ultimately come down to Mizzou head coach Cuonzo Martin once he is physically cleared by his medical team.
Porter Jr. underwent a microdiscectomy of the L3-L4 spinal discs the week of Thanksgiving. The procedure, which has a three-to-four month recovery time led many to speculate that not only would Porter Jr.’s season end, but his career at Missouri would be over. After recovery, Porter Jr. would then leave for the NBA Draft.
However, Michael says he’s not looking too far forward into the future, he’s just concerned with playing basketball.
I relayed to coach Martin what Porter Jr. said about being able to play immediately if he were cleared by doctors. Martin says he can’t really give a timeline as to how long or how many practices it would take until he would feel comfortable putting Michael on the floor.
Let’s examine the scenarios of Michael might return. If he is cleared at his doctor’s appointment next week to begin practicing, that eliminates Tue, Feb 13 at home against Texas A & M. Would his first game back come on the road, or would he feel more comfortable in front of his home fans? If Cuonzo is ready to get Michael on the floor ASAP, that first true opportunity could come on Sat, Feb 17 at LSU. My prediction would be Porter’s first game back would come on Tue, Feb 20 at home against Ole Miss to give him close to a week of practice before his first game and one appearance before a big showdown on Sat, Feb 24 at Kentucky.
Cuonzo could also stay on the cautious side and hold him out past the Kentucky game and have Porter Jr debut on the road, but to travel to Lexington with another weapon like MPJ could sure help Mizzou.