C.J. Watson Likely to Return Wednesday

The Indiana Pacers could see a small boost on Wednesday when they face the Milwaukee Bucks.

Reserve point guard C.J. Watson is eyeing a return to the lineup Wednesday after missing 17 of the the team’s last 18 games, or in other words, nearly a month of basketball.


Watson has been dealing with a couple of injuries over that span. One of them being a right elbow sprain, which also happens to be his shooting arm. He suffered the elbow sprain in a game against Golden State on March 4, a 96-98 home loss.

(Photo: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports)

(Photo: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports)

The other injury — a strained right hamstring — has also lingered since mid-March. Watson returned to the lineup on March 14 believing his right elbow would respond positively from treatment. However, in the game that night against Philadelphia, Watson strained his right hamstring and has been out of the lineup ever since.

Watson’s presence on the floor, specifically his ball-handling ability and experience as a backup point guard, has been missed. His injuries could be an underlying reason why Indiana has struggled mightily of late.

Not only have the starters played poorly and out of sync, but the second unit has also has its fair share of issues, in part because of Watson’s absence.

“I feel a lot better,” Watson said recently. “Just trying to get back out there.”

Watson told Scott Agness of Pacers.com it has been the recovery from the right elbow injury, not so much the hamstring, that has held him back from returning to the lineup sooner.

“My elbow swelled up, so that’s what set me back more,” Watson added. “Hamstring is getting a lot better but the elbow is the reason why I’ve been out the last couple of games.”

Third-string point guard Donald Sloan has stepped into the rotation during Watson’s absence over the past 10 games. Sloan has averaged 3.4 points in approximately 10 minutes per game.

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