Jarrett Allen continues to recover from his ankle injury, but Cleveland Cavaliers head coach JB Bickerstaff has refused to comment on his timeline.
Allen has been sidelined since October 7 after the Cavs discovered a bone bruise in his left ankle. He is expected to be re-evaluated in two weeks, with more updates on his recovery and injury set to follow.
On Saturday, one week since Allen’s injury, Bickerstaff was asked about the status of the big man. The Cleveland tactician confirmed that Allen is recovering well, but he didn’t specify when the one-time All-Star could be available since he doesn’t want to put any pressure on him.
“He’s making progress. Where he is doing more stuff is on the AlterG, which is the anti-gravity treadmill. So he’s making progress from that standpoint as well,” Bickerstaff explained, via Sports Illustrated.
When asked about Allen’s timeline, Bickerstaff responded: “That’s something I don’t want to jump out and say. I don’t want to put any unnecessary pressure on anybody. We want to do the right thing by Jarrett. Make sure that when he’s back, he’s back for the long-term and we’re not having to bring him back and take him out and bring him back again.”
The Cavs certainly do not have a need to rush Jarrett Allen back. While it’s not ideal that he couldn’t join the team in preseason, it’s way better to have him recover for now instead of rushing him and potentially aggravating his injury come the start of the 2023-24 regular season.
Allen figures to be a crucial part of the Cavs once again, and it will definitely benefit the Cavs more if he’s at 100 percent health before he comes back–even if that means he misses a few games to start the new campaign.
Jarrett Allen injury a ‘blessing in disguise’ for Evan Mobley
While Jarrett Allen’s absence hurts the Cavs a bit, they shouldn’t really worry that much since they still have another capable big man in Evan Mobley.
In fact, when Allen suffered the injury, some saw it as a “blessing in disguise” for Mobley since it could allow him to explore other aspects of his game. With Allen, Mobley pairs up with him to form Cleveland’s Twin Towers. Now that his fellow big man is out, Mobley could operate with more space and show what he can do on both offense and defense.
“I think this could be a bit of a blessing in disguise for the Cavs because, as we know, there’s a lot of pressure on Cleveland this year, lot of pressure to win, lot of pressure on a lot of fronts with the Cavs,” Tim Bontemps of ESPN said on The Hoop Collective podcast. “I do think one of the possible downsides of that was that I don’t know if Evan Mobley was necessarily gonna get the opportunity to operate in some more space offensively and have the ball in his hands more and do some more stuff that they really need.”
It remains to be seen how Mobley will grow as he anchors the frontcourt of the Cavs while Allen remains sidelined, but it’s definitely an opportunity that he cannot waste.
As for Allen, here’s hoping that he will be able to return sooner rather than later. The 2023-24 campaign starts in late October, with Cleveland opening the season against the Brooklyn Nets on October 25.