Portland Trail Blazers All-Star Damian Lillard received a cortisone injection to help mitigate ongoing abdominal pain and could return to action as soon as this weekend. The news comes from Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports.
Lillard has been inactive for the Blazers since November 30th. Portland has played four games in the interim, earning a 1-3 record without their starting point guard. On December 1st, the Blazers announced Lillard would be out of action for an estimated ten days.
Lillard’s abdominal issues have cropped up over multiple seasons. They have appeared to be more acute in 2021-22, as Lillard’s performance has been markedly different than in prior seasons, lacking his trademark explosiveness and pure shooting form.
Lillard has averaged 21.5 points, 4.0 rebounds, and 7.8 assists in 20 appearances for the Blazers this year, playing 35.7 minutes per game. That’s down from 28.8 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 7.5 assists in 35.8 minutes per game just one year ago. His shooting percentage has dropped from 45.1% to 39.7%, his three-point accuracy from 39.1% to 30.2%.
Haynes reports that Lillard could return to action as soon as this Sunday’s game versus the Minnesota Timberwolves. That would coincide with the original ten-day prediction.