Back in June of 2007, Greg Oden had as Frank Sinatra used to sing “The World On A String And The String Around His Finger” after the Portland Trail Blazers selected him with the first pick in the 2007 NBA Draft. Along with the Blazers talented young shooting guard Brandon Roy, he would soon make the team one of the élite squads in the Association and bring the first NBA Title to Portland since Bill Walton won the Finals in 1977.
As John Lennon used to sing “Life Is What Happens While We’re Busy Making Other Plans” and things did not exactly turn out the way that the team and their fans expected. B-Roy retired far too soon before this season started as injuries took their toll on him and Monday, Oden had microfracture surgery performed for the second time on his left knee in Vail, Colorado according to a report from the “Oregonian.” The 24-year-old center went under anesthesia believing that he would be undergoing a simple arthroscopic procedure; however after surgeons opened up his knee they realized it was far worse than they had expected.
This is the third time overall that the big man has had the surgery; having it done one time on his right knee as well. He is done for the season yet again without ever playing a game. He has not been in an NBA game since December of 2009; and has played just 82 games since signing with the club. It certainly does not make Blazers fans feel any better when the player who was taken with the second pick in that 2007 NBA Draft Kevin Durant, scored 51 points in a win for the Oklahoma City Thunder on Sunday.
Portland General Manager Chad Buchanan expressed sympathy for Oden when announcing the news to reporters. He said “It’s been tough for him, obviously, being around but not always being on the court, it’s hard on anybody, any player. what Greg loves to do, and to have that take away has been very difficult on him.”
Buchanan said that it would take a while for the center to make his way back to the hardwood; however he refused to speculate that this would be a career ending setback. He told media members “We don’t know the exact timeline at this point, but obviously, your typical mircofracture can take up to a year, sometimes a little longer.His last two microfracture lesions have healed fine. There’s no reason to think he can come back as long as he shows the work ethic and desire he has shown to come back from it. I think it’s premature to speculate anything beyond that.”
If Oden does continue his NBA career; it is far from a certainty that he would resume it in a Trail Blazers uniform. The big man signed a one year deal for the current season for $1.5 million and he will be an unrestricted Free Agent at the end of the campaign. It remains to be seen if the team as well as the player wold want to continue the relationship or part ways.