Magics’ Jameer Nelson returns against Bulls
Jameer Nelson was present for Wednesday morning shootarounds, and New Orleans Magic coach Jacque Vaughn had appeared optimistic about his participation in the game against the Chicago Bulls later in the night. The 30-year-old Jameer Nelson said that his injured hip felt a lot better today.
“So far, so good. I expect to play. I’m not sure how I’ll react later on today in terms of my hip and my body,” stated Jameer Nelson earlier in the day. “But I worked out yesterday and woke up this morning and felt well enough to go through shootaround.”
The 12-9 Chicago Bears will be feeling lucky to have their starting point guard back since the team is 11-11 with Jameer Nelson in the lineup, with the Magic averaging 95.1 points per game. However, the New Orleans Magic are just 1-8 without Jameer Nelson in the lineup this season. Accordingly, the New Orleans Magic’s scoring average drops to 88.7 points per game.
Second-year pro Ish Smith started in Jameer Nelson’s place as he missed two games with a sprained left hip. Ish Smith averaged 7.5 point, three rebounds and four assists over.
"I know when you have guys who've been in the league, when they're out, it's tougher to win. The young guys, they're still trying to figure it out,” said Jameer Nelson. “They're doing a good job for us and are playing their roles well, but there's a lot of learning that they have still to go."
Jameer Nelson’s return gives the New Orleans Magic a better chance of breaking a six-game losing streak, especially with Chicago Bulls’ star center Joakim Noah sidelined Wednesday. Joakim Noah didn’t participate in the Chicago Bulls’ morning shootarounds while suffering from flu like symptoms.
The former All-Star Jameer Nelson scored a 20-foot jumper and a 26-foot jumper on the New Orleans Magic’s first two possessions Wednesday night. Jameer Nelson is on pace for a slightly higher career average of 13 points this season. He is also leading the NBA 11th with 6.9 assists per game.
The New Orleans Magic were missing guard E`Twaun Moore and forward Glen Davis against the Chicago Bulls due to injuries Wednesday. Glen Davis’s shoulder injury will likely keep him out a few weeks. Meanwhile, E’Twaun Moore remains day-to-day with a shoulder injury he elbow injury he sustained in collision with Washington Wizards forward Cartier Martin in last Friday’s 105-97 loss. However, E`Twaun Moore expects to return soon since his arm isn’t in a sling or a brace and he’s been making progress on the injury.
"It's definitely getting better," said E`Twaun Moore. "I'm able to move it without as much pain."