Marvin Bagley III has played just 13 games in his sophomore season with the Sacramento Kings due to nagging injury problems. His latest injury — a left midfoot sprain he suffered in December and re-aggravated in January — has kept him sidelined for 28 of the Kings’ last 32 games.
The former No. 2 overall pick didn’t exactly look like he was on the cusp of a breakout in the 13 games he played, but the Kings could have used his shot creation and rebounding in their push for a playoff spot, and he could have used the reps after an injury-riddled rookie season. Now, with the NBA on an indefinite suspension, any aspirations the Kings had for the 2019-20 season, including Bagley’s return and development, have been shelved.
But in the midst of the season’s pause, we finally got an update on Bagley, albeit a relatively hollow update. In a conference call with reporters on Wednesday, Luke Walton said that Bagley has made progress:
Kings coach Luke Walton just held a conference call with media. Some key points:— Jason Jones (@mr_jasonjones) April 22, 2020
1. "Marvin is doing great. He's feeling much better."
2. Luke is focused on current roster/possiblitiy of return of the season and front office is monitoring draft.
3. Yes, Luke has seen Tiger King
That’s obviously great news for Bagley, but we still have no idea where he’s at in his rehab. Walton wouldn’t even commit to saying Bagley would play if the season resumed:
More Luke Walton on Marvin Bagley III's health:— Jason Jones (@mr_jasonjones) April 22, 2020
"In talking to Marvin he feels much better. He’s been asking for film clips and we’ve been sending him videos to study. He’s excited about playing ball again."
Noted Bagley having his brothers to get on the court with him is good.
When asked about Bagley being available if the season restarts, Walton said Bagley would need to go through the usual protocol, playing 3-on-3 up to 5-on-5, etc., and get clearance from the medical staff.— Jason Jones (@mr_jasonjones) April 22, 2020
In Walton’s defense, no one knows anything right now. Not only has the league been shut down for almost two months, but team practice facilities have been closed for the last month. Even if the Kings’ training staff cleared Bagley for five-on-five, he wouldn’t have anywhere to work out.
Still, it’s hard not to feel a little frustrated with how mum the Kings have been with Bagley’s progression since January. The last update the team gave was in March, and it wasn’t much of an update at all. Walton’s comments were something, but they didn’t paint a clear picture as to where Bagley is in rehab.