Even with a change of scenery, the Markelle Fultz saga continues to be weird and completely impenetrable. Fultz is on the Orlando Magic now, but it doesn’t seem that too much has changed. Magic coach Steve Clifford spoke to Justin Termine and Eddie Johnson on the SiriusXM show “NBA Today” about when Fultz might start playing, and Clifford pretty much had no idea.
"We don't have a timetable for when he'll be back, but he's really doing a good job." @OrlandoMagic HC Steve Clifford gives @TermineRadio and @Jumpshot8 the latest on Markelle Fultz pic.twitter.com/N8gTv7rh3j— SiriusXM NBA Radio (@SiriusXMNBA) July 15, 2019
“He’s been great. He’s working hard. He’s made good progress. You know, we don’t have a timetable for when he’ll be back, but he’s really doing a good job.”
Fultz has been recovering from thoracic outlet syndrome, which affected his shoulder and in turn his shooting ability. And while it’s great to hear that Fultz is “really doing a good job,” the fact that there’s no timeline for his return (and no actual health update) isn’t terribly encouraging.
There has been a health update recently, but it didn’t come from the team. Analyst and former player Caron Butler discussed it during an NBA Summer League broadcast.
“The guy that no one’s talking about, who’s healthy, who’s worked his tail off right now all summer long is Markelle Fultz. I think he’s going to be a huge addition to this ball club.”
Fultz has the same agent that Butler did when he was a player, which could be where this info is coming from. But “healthy” is a pretty broad term. And Clifford told SiriusXM that Fultz just wasn’t ready for the Summer League.
Johnson: “Did you hope that maybe he could’ve gotten to a point to play in the summer leagues? Maybe have that aggressiveness and just go at it? Take shots, don’t worry about it?”
Clifford: “Yeah, we talked about it earlier, and you know, if he would have progressed to that point, then you know, that could have been a possibility.”
So to recap: Fultz is “really doing a good job” on his road to recovery, but the Magic have no idea when he’ll be ready to play. Butler says that he’s healthy, but he obviously wasn’t healthy enough to participate in the Summer League.
This would all seem odd, but in the saga of Markelle Fultz, this is pretty much normal.
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