Greg Oden to Reportedly be Cleared For 5-On-5 Soon, Could Play During Preseason

by October 13, 2013

Greg Oden back? Almost! According to ESPN, the big man will be cleared for 5-on-5 at some point soon, and may play during a preseason game or two as well: “Greg Oden is likely to be cleared for full practice work with the Miami Heat next week and could see his first NBA action in four years during one of their final preseason games, sources told on Saturday. Oden last played in a game with the Trail Blazers in 2009, when he sustained his second season-ending knee injury since Portland selected him with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2007 draft. The Heat, who signed Oden to a one-year contract this past summer hoping to salvage his career, have been encouraged by his development in recent days. Heat coach Erik Spoelstra won’t rule out playing Oden in at least one of the team’s five remaining preseason games if the 7-foot center avoids any setbacks or recurring swelling in his knees, which have endured multiple surgeries the past five years. Oden was quietly cleared for more physically demanding contact work in Miami’s practices earlier this week. He completed another extensive workout on the court Friday before the Heat’s preseason win over Charlotte in a neutral-site game played in Kansas City. ‘The next step for me now is just doing some five-on-five work and just getting out there,’ Oden told ‘Every little step for me, I just get excited. I just want to get out there and do more and more, get my wind back, get my legs back under me. I’m hoping in the next couple of weeks I’ll be able to get a couple of minutes out there.'”