Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard put up a season-high 50 points in a close loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday, despite playing through a minor ankle injury. He had been listed as questionable ahead of game time.
In actuality, he played through two ankle injuries, he revealed when speaking to reporters after the contest. He tweaked his right ankle against the Orlando Magic on Tuesday and rolled his left ankle twice as well.
But Lillard assured reporters that he’s not worried about his health right now.
How’s your health? You were testing your ankle a little before the game, or?
Yeah, I rolled my ankle pretty good in the first quarter last game and I did it again in the fourth quarter. I actually rolled my left ankle twice and I tweaked my right one last game. So, just the last two days just a lot of rehab. My ankles, I felt like I could barely move them out there because I had so much tape and a different style of tape job than I usually get just to protect it. And then, one of my first shots I come down on somebody foot and kind of irritate it again, but, you know, I was just trying to do an exercise to just activate it, loosen it up a little bit so it wouldn’t be so stiff and, you know, I guess it was alright. I guess we ended up being alright.
Is it anything you’re worried about going forward?
No. I mean, I think it responded well. We wrapped it right after the game, I did some treatment in the training room, went home, I kept it wrapped all night, came in yesterday morning and did some stuff, worked with my PT, and, you know, same thing this morning. You know, it was just, like, I limped in this morning and I just started feeling better as the day went on and it ended up being alright, like I said.
Lillard has missed 12 games so far this season with calf injuries but appears prepared to continue playing with treatment on his ankles. The injuries do not seem severe enough to take him out of action, though it would not be surprising to see his name pop up in the “questionable” section of future injury reports. We’ll just have to see how he feels.
The Trail Blazers’ next game is against the Dallas Mavericks on January 14.