Sasha Vezenkov gives long-awaited injury update at Kings practice 

Oklahoma City Thunder v Sacramento Kings
Oklahoma City Thunder v Sacramento Kings / Lachlan Cunningham/GettyImages

The Sacramento Kings have been plagued by injuries lately. Kevin Huerter, Trey Lyles, and Sasha Vezenkov have all been out for an extended time already. 

Vezenkov is the least impactful name on that list, as he just consistently broke the rotation before his injury, but he is the one with the best chance to get back in time for the playoffs. Kevin Huerter’s dislocated shoulder and labral tear and Trey Lyles’ MCL sprain are serious injuries that came at unfortunate times. 

Huerter had been struggling before the injury, but his mere presence stretches the floor, and you can never know when his shot will start falling. Losing Lyles to a long-term injury was a huge blow to the Kings’ big men rotation, taking away an important bench player and their small-ball five.

It is still unclear when either of them will return, but Vezenkov is getting closer to being able to play again. 

Sasha Vezenkov says he is close to returning

Vezenkov has not played a game since early February. Two serious ankle sprains kept him out for an extended time, thinning the Kings’ frontcourt rotation. After the team’s latest practice, he shared a long-awaited injury update. 

“I’m feeling better…getting to the right direction,” he told reporters in attendance. “For the first time in my career, I’m sitting out for so long, so, you know, it’s stressful. I want to help the team, but I’m trying to be 100 percent.”

When asked about a specific timetable for his return, the forward wasn’t sure yet. “I don’t know yet. Every practice is different, every day is different,” he said, knowing very well that he would have to get back into game shape quickly. 

His desire to get back on the court and help his team is certainly shared by the fanbase and probably also by his teammates. With Lyles still sidelined, the Kings could really use his size, rebounding, and shooting. 

This is a huge chance for him to help the team as well as make his case for a consistent role. Vezenkov has recently voiced some frustration with his role in the NBA so far, and if he returns soon, he will have a chance to change that. Coach Mike Brown gives players chances and rewards hard work. Keon Ellis is the best example of that. 

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