Nets’ TJ Warren is making up for lost time after a long layoff
After missing nearly all of the past two seasons with foot injuries, Nets’ TJ Warren is making up for lost time, though his time on the court is still limited.
The Nets are playing the long game with Warren and continuing to monitor his minutes to make sure he can make an impact once the playoffs are over. Meanwhile, he is 17 games away from his first regular action since 2019-20 and will make a strong impression when called upon.
“Every game I’m feeling more and more,” Warren said Saturday after Nets practice in Brooklyn. “Two years is a long time, two calendar years, a matter of several legs. But I feel good. Mentally, I’m in a good space. I just want to improve and help this team win as much as I can. maybe
Heading into Sunday’s game against the Thunder at Barclays Center, Warren is averaging 10.5 points and 3.1 rebounds in 20.4 minutes per game.
Warren’s improved play makes him an intriguing option to replace Kevin Durant in the starting lineup after the former MVP was sidelined with a sprained MCL. However, the Nets chose to use Joe Harris to help manage Warren’s workload. However, Warren became the first bench player to score 20 points in 28 minutes at the eight-minute mark of the first quarter against the Celtics on Thursday.
“Try to get in where I’m at,” Warren said. “Try to be aggressive on the little pushes I have. Playing with minute limits is not easy. You don’t want to think too much or try to find out, like, time is running out. like a countdown for you. Know that this is a big goal, and getting healthy by the end of the year is the goal. So far so good. I feel good.
Warren’s 28 minutes Thursday night were his second-most of the season, trailing only the 31:28 he had against the Hornets on New Year’s Eve. But even if Warren continues to play at a high level in his limited minutes, that doesn’t change the Nets’ plans for him.
“I gave him this message: That’s my No. 1 goal, for him to stay healthy, make the playoffs and show the world what he’s good at,” coach Jacques Vaughn said. “It would be a guiding light.
“Am I sometimes tempted? [to push his minutes] if it turns? Of course, any coach will. But for his longevity, for the group, we put him in a position to be successful all year long.
Warren played the first four games of the 2020-21 season before being ruled out and requiring surgery to repair a small stress fracture (the bone near the foot) in his left shin, which cost him the rest of the year. He then missed the entire 2021-22 season with a foot problem.
Still, the Nets took a chance on Warren, signing him to a one-year, $2.6 million deal last offseason, then keeping him cautious until he made his debut. He entered the season on December 2nd – almost two years since he last played. NBA game.
Warren said he’s recovering from a long layoff, but he thinks he’s playing better than people thought a month and a half into the game. However, he will only keep his prospects with the Nets halfway through the season.
“It can be frustrating at times, trying to deal with minute restrictions and stuff like that,” Warren said. “But to be healthy at the end of the season, I have to see the big picture.”
All news on the site does not represent the views of the site, but we automatically submit this news and translate it through software technology on the site rather than a human editor.