Heat Rumors: Victor Oladipo to Undergo Surgery on Knee Injury; Typically 1-Year Rehab

Heat Rumors: Victor Oladipo to Undergo Surgery on Knee Injury; Typically 1-Year Rehab

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTTwitter LogoFeatured Columnist IVApril 24, 2023

MIAMI, FLORIDA - APRIL 22: Victor Oladipo #4 of the Miami Heat reacts after suffering an injury during the fourth quarter against the Milwaukee Bucks during Game Three of the Eastern Conference First Round Playoffs at Kaseya Center on April 22, 2023 in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Megan Briggs/Getty Images)

Megan Briggs/Getty Images

Victor Oladipo might miss the entire 2023-24 season as he recovers from a torn patellar tendon in his left knee that he suffered during the Miami Heat’s Game 3 win over the Milwaukee Bucks.

According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, “Oladipo is set for surgery on his left knee, and he is once again headed toward an extensive rehab period, as these injuries typically carry a one-year recovery time.”

Injuries have defined the second half of Oladipo’s career. He had surgery to repair a ruptured quad tendon in his right knee in both January 2019 and May 2021. The first recovery period took him a calendar year, while the second cost him 10 months.

“It was a great win, but when you see a player go down like that and particularly a player like Vic, who has gone through so much in the last three years—I don’t know what it is right now, so I don’t want to jump the gun on anything,” Miami head coach Erik Spoelstra told reporters after Game 3. “But that’s definitely not a good feeling to see.”

The 31-year-old Oladipo was an All-Star in both the 2017-18 and 2018-19 seasons and put up career numbers in the first of those campaigns, averaging 23.1 points, 5.2 rebounds, 4.3 assists and 2.4 steals per game while shooting 47.7 percent from the field and 37.1 percent from three.

Oladipo had emerged as one of the NBA’s top two-way wings, but since his first surgery in January 2019, he has played in only 102 games across the past four seasons. He did play a major role for the Heat in last postseason’s run to the Eastern Conference Finals, however, averaging 10.6 points in 15 appearances (one start), providing a nice jolt of offense off the bench for the Heat.

He was expected to play a similar role in these playoffs and put up 11.5 points per contest in his two games as the Heat took a surprising 2-1 series lead on the top-seeded Bucks, with superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo sidelined in Games 2 and 3 because of a back injury. The Greek Freak left Game 1 with the injury in the second quarter.

Charania reported that Antetokounmpo would return to the starting lineup for Game 4. That should give the Bucks a huge boost as they look to recover in the series and push for a second title in the past three seasons.

The Heat, meanwhile, have been crushed by injuries in the series. Sharpshooter Tyler Herro is out for at least six weeks with a broken right hand, while Jimmy Butler left Game 3 with a bruised glute but could have returned to the blowout win if he was needed, per Spoelstra.

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