Tualatin, Ore. -- Portland Trail Blazers center Meyers Leonard is still not quite ready to make his return to the court from a scary right ankle injury he sustained in a 89-85 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers back on Dec. 29.
“I would hope at least in the next couple of weeks,” Leonard said. “We'll see. There's really no telling. Some of these things can take two weeks, some of them can take six weeks. I just have to keep my fingers crossed that I'm back as soon as possible.”
However, he says he is making progress.
“I've made a lot of progress in the last week,” Leonard said. “The first morning I woke up from it, I could barely walk. It's been a lot better. I'm almost walking normal... Pretty much walking normal out of a boot [with] no crutches.”
Leonard said he was on crutches for two days and wore a boot for five days after that. Now, he's upgraded to walking shoes with a wrap on, to keep the swelling down.
In the time being, he will continue to get treatment twice a day along with some strengthening techniques he does at home in order to return to action as soon as possible.
The 20-year old rookie out of Illinois says he has never experienced any pain like this before, even though he has sprained his ankle in college and broken his foot in high school.
“Never really had anything like this,” he said. “Injuries for me are horrible because I hate being out. I'm a competitor and I like to play.”
According to Leonard, he sprained his ankle in that Philly game after he came down from grabbing a rebound in the third quarter, placing all of his 250 pounds on that one ankle. His first reaction was to grab his right knee, something Trail Blazer fans did not want to see.
Thankfully, the knee wasn't the issue.
“I was trying to pick my leg up,” Leonard said. “ A lot of people have asked me about that. I was just trying to pick my leg up off the floor because my ankle was pretty painful.”
He has yet to see the replay, but says he heard the fans reaction after the jumbo-tron showed it to the fans and he thought it was best not to look.
“I didn't want to see it,” he said. Maybe later on in the season.”