Tualatin, Ore. -- Portland Trail Blazers guard Elliot Williams is making progress during his rehabilitation after tearing his left Achilles in a voluntary team workout in early September.
His rehab is focused on strengthening his left leg in order for it to be as strong as his right. Williams main exercise regimen consists of calf raises, resistance band workouts, quad exercises, and workouts in the pool, to name a few. Although Williams stamina is improving, he's not sure to how long it will take until his leg is strong enough for full basketball related activities.
“As soon as I get my left leg as strong as my right, then I can progress to running and jumping and getting my explosion back,” Williams told CSNNW.com. “I'm not there yet and I don't when I will be, but my spirits are high.”
For the first time this season on Monday, Williams participated in the team's shootaround as they prepared for the Washington Wizards. Trail Blazers trainer Jay Jensen thought it would be good for Williams to jump in the mix.
“Jay told me to go ahead and try to shoot and move around with the team so I went ahead and did it and it felt good,” Williams said. “It was the first time I got to do it and be with the team. I just did a lot of shooting drills, so that was a good sign for me as far as healing. It was a step in the right direction.”
Williams' injury is expected to keep him out for the entire 2012-13 season. He's not saying he will be out the remainder of the season, but he isn't saying he's aiming for a return this year, either.
“Honestly, my goal is to get healthy as fast as possible,” he said. “I wouldn't say I have a goal to return at a certain date. I just want to get healthy and I'm doing that. As far as coming back this season, you remember what K.G. (Kevin Garnett) said in '08?"
He was referring to K.G. yelling out “Anything is possible.”
Williams, 23, missed his entire 2010-11 rookie season after having surgery on both of his knees. Last season, he dislocated his left shoulder after a practice on the road on March 8 and did not return that season.
Back in late October, the Trail Blazers declined to pick up Williams' fourth-year option, making him a unrestricted free agent. Without a huge body of work to pull from, Williams' stock will be an unknown.
However, he's confident in what he can provide on the court and he says it all starts with getting healthy first.
“I'm not even worried about that (free agency),” Williams said. “Right now, my main focus is getting healthy. Once I get healthy, I'll be fine.”