UPDATE: Turner indicated that his hand did not hurt during Friday’s practice, noting that he is still playing with a strap and a brace over the injured finger. (video at CSN NW)
After missing 14 games with a broken right hand, Portland Trail Blazers forward Evan Turner is likely to make his on-court return against the Atlanta Hawks on Saturday, according to Trail Blazers digital reporter Casey Holdahl.
Terry Stotts said @thekidet is likely to play vs. Hawks, though the final determination is still to be determined— Casey Holdahl (@CHold) March 17, 2017
Head coach Terry Stotts had inserted Turner into the starting lineup prior to injury, yielding positive results for the team. The Trail Blazers notched a 5-5 record in games where Turner started, including wins over the playoff-bound Boston Celtics and Memphis Grizzlies.
In Turner’s absence, Maurice Harkless reclaimed the starting small forward spot. Turner’s exact role upon return is not entirely clear at this juncture, as it has been mercurial over the course of the season and he has yet to see action alongside starting center Jusuf Nurkic, who was acquired while Turner was recovering.
Turner has averaged 9.7 points, 3.8 rebounds, and 3.4 assists through 50 games with the Trail Blazers this season.