Anthony Edwards returned Wednesday night from the first non-COVID injury that ever caused him to miss NBA games in his brief pro career. The tendinopathy in his left knee caused the second-year Timberwolves guard to miss four consecutive games.
“I don’t normally get hurt,” Edwards said Wednesday. “This is the most I’ve had to sit out, for sure.”
He battled the knee for a while leading up to the all-star game, and was listed as questionable on the injury report ahead of games. Yet prior to the break, Edwards continued to play through the ailment for the Timberwolves (38-29).
“It’s something that you can play through; certain people can play through it. But if you don’t have a certain tolerance for pain, you can’t play through that. That joint was just throbbing on my knee, right by my kneecap, big knot just hurting, hurting, hurting,” Edwards said. “It would start off good, then three to four minutes into the game, hurting, hurting, hurting for the rest of the game and I be in trouble because I can’t really do nothing, for real.”
Edwards said the recent time off was “needed.” It appeared to have a positive impact. The 20-year-old guard said he didn’t experience any issues with the knee during Wednesday’s 132-102 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder.
“So that’s a great sign,” Edwards said.
Edwards finished the game with 16 points, three assists, two steals and a blocked shot.
“I thought it was a good first game back,” Timberwolves coach Chris Finch said.
The knee is likely something the Timberwolves will continue to monitor and potentially manage down the stretch run of the regular season. Edwards noted he has had to go to bed earlier so he can get to the facility earlier in the mornings for his treatments.
“But it’s all good,” he said. “It’s to get me back to 100 percent, and I’m all with it.”
Finch noted prior to the Thunder game just how excited Edwards was to get back to competition. Edwards longs to play the game, and despises missing action. He said returning to action is the “best thing that ever happened to me.” There was a reason for his specific return date Wednesday.
“I wanted to get my rhythm back before the Miami game (Saturday), because I know that’s a big game,” Edwards said. “I thought this game was the perfect game for me to go out there and get all the rust out. Orlando game (Friday), then should be ready.”