Warriors' center Andrew Bogut has been on a complicated road to recovery following ankle surgery he had in April. This week however brought forth news that the team hid the exactly what kind of surgery he underwent.
The 7-foot center actually had microfracture ankle surgery, a serious procedure, instead of the minor ankle arthroscopic surgery the Warriors reported. The Warriors also reported that Bogut would return from left ankle rehabilitation this week, practices he missed. Bogut says there is still too much swelling for him to engage in rigorous activity.
Bogut is getting increasingly frustrated by the team drumming up fan's expectations of his return. "It's frustrating. People look at you and think 'Why are you still hurting? It's just an ankle.' That's the feeling I get sometimes... You feel like you're letting down the team, the fans and the organization," Bogut told reporters on Tuesday.
The Warriors have consistently led fans and reporters to believe several falsehoods about Bogut's recovery:
- They said he might return at the end of the season, or for the Olympics.
- They said he could play in training camp.
- They said he could play 20 minutes per game at the start of the season.
- They said he would return after 7 to 10 days of rehab.
- They said he would practice this week with the intent of playing this weekend.
Bogut and Warriors GM Bob Myers spoke in a press conference on Tuesday, making it clear that player and organization are finally on the same page. Myers defended the team against the idea they purposefully failed to disclose the nature of Bogut's injury. "On any injury that occurs, I don't think there's any attempt at deception or omission. We convey it how we think it appropriate as long as we're on the same page with the athlete. I like to think that we are transparent, and that we always will be and try to do a good job informing the media," Myers said.
Bogut says that there was "never any pressure" from the Warriors to return too soon from the injury. He was noncommittal about his return, saying it could take months. "I'm still a ways off. It's an interesting rehab, because there's no real timeline for it. I'll be back when I'm ready to play at 100%. The season's five, six months before the playoffs, which we have a great chance of making. I don't think it's going to be five, six months. I hope it won't be. It would be a massive setback if it was. I'm not going to say a month or two months or three months, but I definitely think I'll be back," Bogut said.
While the Warriors were on the road this week, Bogut was with his doctor in Los Angeles, getting blood manipulation injections. He hasn't seen improvements from the treatment yet. Bogut has been able to use the stationary bike and elliptical machine to maintain his weight and conditioning and has been on the court doing light shooting drills. He can't do any running or anything that calls for a change in direction however.
Bogut's ankle is sore and swollen after workouts. Scans show no new damage, but there is evidence of scar tissue and deep bone bruising.
Head coach Mark Jackson says "We're not pressuring him. I want him back when he's healthy. We're going to hold down the fort and take care of business. We're more than capable of going out and taking care of the job. We don't want him on the floor until he's 100%. You get uncomfortable and more frustrated when you try to rush it back."
The Warriors went 2-2 with Bogut in the line-up, who averaged 6 points and 3.8 rebounds in their first five games. Without Bogut in the line-up, they're 6-4.
"That makes life much easier because there's no pressure on me to come back right now. If we had a bad record, I'd be feeling the wrath a little bit more from everyone," Bogut said.
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