HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS — It’s easy to get tangled up with semantics during election season. Same goes for injury issues in the NBA.
When you hear that New Orleans Hornets guard Eric Gordon is out indefinitely with a right knee injury, the same one that cost him all but nine games last season and led to him missing the entire preseason and the Hornets’ season-opening loss to the Spurs, you have no choice but to ask an obvious question.
Does “indefinitely” mean that he’s done for the season?
There is no clear-cut answer right now. Gordon has had multiple MRIs and team medical officials have indicated that there is a reason for the pain he’s been experiencing, but no specifics have been made public.
After practice earlier today in New Orleans, Gordon did his best to address those concerns with reporters (including our main man Jimmy Smith of Nola.com):
Responding to a question of whether the latest MRI indicated damage, Gordon said: “That’s the reason why I’m not playing. The past three days I’ve been practicing because I thought it would be something I might have to deal with pain-wise. I went to the organization the other day and told them ‘This is not feeling too good. It’s very painful.’ We went and got another MRI.”
Asked his confidence level that he’d be on the court at some point in the near future, Gordon sounded apprehensive.
“It’ll all be decided on by this weekend,” Gordon said. “There’s no timetable. I don’t know that yet.”
Was there any part of him, he was asked, that felt he might miss the entire season?
“I don’t know; I don’t know at all,” Gordon said. “There’s still no timetable.”
No timetable and no definitive answer as to when or even if Gordon will join prized rookies Anthony Davis and Austin Rivers in the Hornets’ rotation.
A restricted free agent in the summer, Gordon signed an offer sheet with Phoenix and expressed his desire publicly to play there, only to have the Hornets match the offer anyway.
Not everyone is convinced that Gordon’s injury issues are legitimate. Some folks have even gone so far as suggesting this is his retaliation for the Hornets matching that offer sheet.
But Gordon professed his love for New Orleans before apologizing to Hornets fans and the city for not being able to be a part of what many had hoped would be a turnaround season for the franchise:
“First off I just want to say it’s an honor and privilege to be part of this organization as a player. I know things haven’t been going as well as far as being injured since I’ve been here. I have had (a) reoccurring knee injury since I’ve been here and it’s just tough as a player to go through these things. You’re looking for the best for yourself and to even look forward to see what’s best for the team.
“I look forward as a player to helping this franchise and I always look forward to the best to help this team win. And it has been frustrating. Very frustrating as a player not to do your job every day. I only played nine games last year and I haven’t played a game this year. I haven’t played any preseason games. So it’s been very frustrating watching the guys play and me not being a part of it. I know from the fans perspective, it’s frustrating for them. But for a player, it’s most frustrating for me and this organization. I wanted to put it out there. I know it’s tough. But it’s almost all on me …”
This sounds like it could be the beginning of a saga that could end up dogging Gordon and the Hornets all season, provided Gordon’s season actually gets started sometime in the near future.