Recently, Jim O’Brien was talking about how Brandon Rush might be losing his spot in the rotation. He was struggling and Paul George, the team’s first round draft pick last June, deserved a shot. And it looked like O’Brien immediately followed through with that decision when George entered the game before Rush last Sunday against Denver. By the time George checked in 7 minutes into the game against Orlando on Wednesday, it was obvious that Rush had been leapfrogged.
Rush did get into the game briefly in the first half. But when he came back for another cameo late in the third quarter (replacing Granger, not George), he sprained his ankle.
Swingman Brandon Rush will be out about two weeks with a sprained right ankle. Rush, who is wearing a walking boot, injured his ankle in the third quarter against Orlando on Wednesday. Price will get some of Rush’s minutes at shooting guard.
Obviously, someone getting hurt is never a good thing.
But for George, this may provide some mental security. I imagine that in addition to being excited about getting his first real, extended chance to show he can play in this league, he is a little nervous. Learning the Xs and Os in practice is much different from executing them at game speed, and you can tell that George, like all rookies, gets lost out there at times.
With Rush on the shelf, however, George should be able to stop looking over his shoulder and worrying about every little mistake. Now, he can just play basketball without fear of getting yanked.
Hopefully that assurance will help him perform better.