The calf strain that appeared to be a speed bump in Danny Granger's return to regular season play for the Pacers turned into a bigger barrier on Thursday afternoon when Frank Vogel announced that Granger's current injury is worse than originally thought, as Scott Agness reported.
According to Vogel, the extra time needed to heal will likely keep Granger out for the start of the season. The setback also alters Vogel's plans to have Granger join the starting unit with Lance Stephenson coming off the bench to overlap with the starters and second unit. Here are Vogel's quotes on Granger, according to Agness.
Vogel: "[Granger] was on track to maybe have a role with the starting unit where he's still finding his timing & Lance is running the bench"
"With this setback, we'll see where he's at almost on a day-by-day basis."
"There's a process of [Granger] getting back in there, testing the calf again, make sure it's strong. So it's going to be some time."
The Pacers remain an improved team with or without Granger, but seeing him play 20-24 minutes in a limited starting role which allows Stephenson to blend with both the starters and reserves sure looked good in the all-too-brief minutes we saw it in preseason.
That plan still sounds good and with the marathon NBA season, there is still plenty of time to have Granger return to play a similar type of role. We'll just have to wait to see it...again.