As many probably expected, Scott Agness of pacers.com has officially reported that Danny Granger will not be suiting up with the rest of the team when the Pacers tip off the regular season on Tuesday. Due to lingering pain from his strained left calf, the Pacers’ training staff has advised holding Granger out for at least the first two games of the season (10/29 versus the Orlando Magic; 10/30 versus the New Orleans Pelicans).
According to Agness, Frank Vogel related that the training staff prefers to air on the side of caution when it comes to Granger and his well-documented injury history:
"He’s just doing some light shooting and stuff. As long as he’s feeling anything down there, [the training staff is] going to be cautious with it."
Most would likely agree that it is more important to prioritize preserving Granger for the long-term, physical grind of the 82 game regular season, than to push him to comeback for the opener and risk further injury. Nevertheless, during the preseason, it appeared as though the Pacers’ coaching staff had actually settled on Danny retaining his position in the starting line-up. With Granger out, Lance Stephenson will be thrust back into a starting role, which means his ability to run the bench will have to be sacrificed for the time being.
At this point, Vogel, at least publically, seems a little undecided on who will be the benefactor of all of Granger’s minutes come Tuesday, telling pacers.com:
"There’s minutes to be earned with Solomon [Hill] and (Orlando Johnson) and Rasual [Butler] at the backup wing, but I also have the flexibility of playing George [Hill] and C.J. [Watson] together."
Agness reports that Granger will be reevaluated later this week following the Pacers game against New Orleans.