Indiana Pacers All-Star forward Paul George sat down with the local press for the first time since his gruesome leg injury this summer. George, though obviously bummed out about things, says he’s not closing the door on playing next season. From the Pacers’ team website:

Q. Can you update us on what your timeline is (for recovery)? A. “That I don’t know yet. I’ve been talking with the Pacers staff, my whole training staff, and it’s really a day-to-day process right now, taking it one day at a time. We don’t want to put a date on it or a time frame on it. Understanding some days are going to be good and some days are going to be bad. [...] I expect a strong left leg long-term (laughing). It’s something I think I can overcome. It’s a bump in the road. But I’ll be able to battle through this. It’s a story I’ll be able to tell, a testimony I’ll have – something that will make me stronger. Going forward, I don’t think it will affect me in a negative way. There’s so much stuff to take from this, as far as being a part of this team, being able to be kind of a mentor to our younger guys and help them along the way. I’m really taking this in a positive way. I get to sit back and watch the game and just learn.”

 

Q. (Team USA coach Mike Kyzyzewski) said in the immediate moments after you fell you were stoic. Could you take us back to that and what was going through your mind as you lay on the court? A. “I was in shock. I couldn’t believe that it was me this happened to. That’s the only thing that was going through my head. I was doubting myself. I didn’t know what I had done wrong or what had happened. But after it happened I remember the training staff coming over and being by my side and holding me down and telling me to stay calm and not look at my leg. That definitely helped me to not panic. It helped a lot having that trainer come over by my side and (keep me calm). [...] When I looked down and saw my bone sticking out, I knew it was bad. I felt pain before and this was a pain I’ve never felt before. So I knew how bad it was as soon as it happened. Immediately I was shifting to the whole grind coming back.”

 

Q. Is there any chance you’ll play this coming season, maybe at the end of the year? Has there been any discussion about that? A. “No, there hasn’t. As far as I’m concerned, it will be a wait. I’d love to come back this year … I understand there might be a possibility that I won’t be back this year. I’m very aware of that. But if I do have the opportunity to make a comeback, I look forward to it. But if not, I don’t mind taking a year off to get better for the next season.”