The Denver Nuggets have been dealing with a few nagging injuries to start the 2017-18 NBA season including Paul Millsap, who just had successful surgery on his left wrist to repair ligament damage, and also Wilson Chandler, who has been nursing a sore lower back. Now, add Mason Plumlee and his core strain to that list.
Plumlee has been dealing with a core strain for the past week or two and originally appeared on the injury report back on Nov. 17th before the Nuggets took on the New Orleans Pelicans. Since then, five games have come and gone and Plumlee is still dealing with pain stemming from his core.
“It has been a little over a week,” Plumlee told Mile High Sports about how long he has been dealing with discomfort. “Some days are better than others but, they gave me the last couple days to rest and rehab and I feel good now.”
At this juncture, Plumlee has been given time off starting from the night that the Nuggets were able to beat the Memphis Grizzlies at the Pepsi Center in downtown Denver on Nov. 24th all the way until shootaround in Utah on Nov. 28th before taking on the Jazz.
That time off has allowed Plumlee to get healthy which makes the Nuggets’ head coach Michael Malone feel significantly better about playing him. Malone was hesitant on Monday about if Plumlee would play. Plumlee was questionable at the time and Malone did not want to play him if he was going to further hurt himself and the team simultaneously.
“We are trying to do everything we can to get those guys back, but we have to understand; if they are not right I do not want to throw a guy out there because he is not doing himself any good or the team any good,” Malone explained.
While Malone was being much more conservative with his decision to play or not play his newly-signed backup center, Plumlee knew exactly what was going to happen on Tuesday night when the Nuggets were set to tip off against the Jazz.
“Yeah, I am going to play,” Plumlee told Mile High Sports on Monday after practice.
There was no doubt in Plumlee’s mind that he would be on the court attempting to play and help his teammates defeat the Utah Jazz, who just so happened to be the team that came back from being down 15 points on opening night to defeat the Nuggets in what was an awful fourth-quarter collapse.
Plumlee does not foresee his core strain lingering much longer either. The only reason he took time off was that he did not feel like it was healing in the way it should. For now, it seems that Plumlee’s core concerns are only short-term issues that should not sideline him in the future.
“I don’t think so,” Plumlee explained to Mile High Sports when asked if his core strain could linger. “Like I said, the reason for taking some time off the last couple days is because I didn’t feel it getting better. Like, the Memphis game — the Memphis game was painful so I let the staff know. There is nothing alarming on the MRI or anything like that. We are just taking it day by day.”
So far, Plumlee is averaging 6.2 points, 4.4 rebounds, and 1.5 assists in 16.7 minutes per game while shooting 54 percent from the field and 43.4 percent from the free-throw line in 19 games this season. Plumlee will be available to play against the Jazz on Tuesday night in Utah.