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November 11, 2013

Center Al Jefferson starting for Charlotte Bobcats tonight

            After missing the past five regular-season games – and the better part of a month -- with various right-ankle injuries, Charlotte Bobcats center Al Jefferson will start tonight against the Atlanta Hawks at Time Warner Cable Arena.

    “Al is going to start tonight. I don’t know how many minutes he’ll play, but he feels good,” Bobcats coach Steve Clifford said at morning shootaround. “He didn’t have any soreness from practice yesterday, and he feels good. We’ll start him and integrate him into our play as best we can.”

            Jefferson originally hurt his ankle in the second preseason exhibition against the Miami Heat. He sat out the rest of the preseason, coming back for the regular-season opener in Houston. He came up sore after that game, this time with a bone bruise, which shelved him for another five games.

            Clifford said he’ll closely monitor Jefferson for conditioning issues this time around.

    “He and I have already talked about this – he’s going to play his minutes when he’s fresh,” Clifford said. “Now he’s had a longer time without playing. So the conditioning part I have to be smarter with.”

            Told by reporters he’s starting tonight, Jefferson replied, “Music to my ears! I’m ready to get back. I want to get back into the flow of things. I want my teammates to continue to do what they’ve been doing.”

            Where is the injury, as far as recovery?

    “It’s not going to be pain-free for a while. But there’s no limping when I run,” Jefferson said. “I’ve put in some hard work the last couple of days and it’s responded well.”

            Asked about how Clifford will use him in the short run, Jefferson said:

    “He told me when I look tired out there he’s going to snatch me out…I know I’m not in game shape. I’ve been doing a lot of conditioning, so hopefully in a week I’ll be” fully back to game conditioning.”

Posted by Observer Sports on November 11, 2013 at 11:39 AM | Permalink


Al is out of shape in a big way. I would rather keep him on the bench until he is ready both game wise and leg wise. We have been fine without him, and the Hawks don't offer much reason to rush him out.

Posted by: GO Cats! | Nov 11, 2013 3:21:27 PM

Sounds like Clifford's being cautious. I doubt he plays a whole lot of minutes.

Posted by: apauldds | Nov 11, 2013 4:40:07 PM

We need everything we can get! Hawks Bigs are playing well this season!

Posted by: Timbo | Nov 11, 2013 5:39:03 PM

how soon can we trade him?

Posted by: charlottean | Nov 11, 2013 6:00:32 PM

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