Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald interviewed Miami Heat guard Victor Oladipo at the Miami Heat’s media day today. And though Oladipo said that his return is “hopefully sooner rather than later” and that “I’m optimistic,” he said “I really don’t know” when asked whether he will play in 2021 or before the All-Star break.
NEW: Heat’s Victor Oladipo updates status, said he wants to write “one of best comeback stories ever,” hopes to return "sooner than later." Here's really substantive, introspective stuff from Victor in the past 30 minutes, his first interview since March: https://t.co/HV1nPzGeMk— Barry Jackson (@flasportsbuzz) September 27, 2021
The two-time All-Star said that he has only been cleared to do “super light stuff” and that he can’t run at full speed.
As I’ve discussed before, Oladipo has documented his rehab on Instagram. He suffered a quadriceps tendon injury in his right knee in just his fourth game as a member of the Heat, sidelining him for the rest of the season. That marked his second season-ending surgery in 28 months; he had a similar procedure in January 2019.
The former No. 2 pick discussed how hard it’s been over the past two years and how he hopes to show people they can overcome obstacles.
“It’s been really tough. It’s been hard. This is another battle in the books for me. I want to show my resiliency and have one of the best comeback stories ever. I want to make the most of my situation. It’s easy to quit and say ‘woe is me,’ but that doesn’t solve the problem. I know there are a lot of eyes watching. Hopefully, I can be a vessel for them and show them they can get through anything if they really put their mind to it.”
Oladipo also said that Pat Riley didn’t discuss the tantalizing possibility on the minds of lots of Heat fans (and probably Oladipo, too) — if he plays well, Miami can surpass the salary cap to re-sign him.
“Even Pat’s conversation was ‘keep the main thing the main thing,’ Oladipo said. ‘Get healthy. Everything else will take care of itself.’”