Report: Cliff Alexander “tore some cartilage” in left knee

(AP Photo/ Greg Wahl-Stephens)

(AP Photo/ Greg Wahl-Stephens)

After Wednesday’s opener, reports surfaced that Portland Trail Blazers young big man Cliff Alexander’s left knee suffered a setback and that he was weighing surgery.

Joe Freeman of The Oregonian reports that the injury, initially diagnosed as a bone bruise in Alexander’s left knee, was slightly worse than previously thought.

Freeman writes

Alexander said Friday that further testing of the knee pain he endured early in training camp revealed he “tore some cartilage” from his knee bone. Roughly two weeks of rest has — at least temporarily — healed an injury originally diagnosed as a bone bruise. But if Alexander encounters swelling or pain again in the coming weeks, it’s possible he will need surgery.

“As of now, I’m fine, I feel no pain,” he said after the Blazers’ morning shootaround at Talking Stick Resort Arena. “I can run and jump, do everything. But if the swelling and pain comes back, then I might need surgery.”

Jay Allen of Fox Sports Radio 620 AM had the original report that Alexander may need surgery.

In the past week, Alexander had been upgraded from out to doubtful in his return from a bone bruise in his left knee. However, it appears that the injury may be a little bit more serious. The injury kept Alexander out of the entire Blazers’ preseason and he did not dress for Portland’s season opener.

The Blazers signed Alexander in the summer and he made the team with a non-guaranteed deal, impressing teammates with his athleticism and finishing ability around the basket.

I guess we’ll have to see whether fans and media will ever be treated to seeing those skills on display this season.

There has not been an official update from the Blazers regarding his status.

Erik Gundersen

Erik Gundersen

Erik Gundersen is the Trail Blazers beat reporter for The Columbian. He's a graduate of the Allen School of Journalism and Communication at the University of Oregon in addition earning a degree in Spanish. He's covered the NBA for four seasons. You can also occasionally find his work on's NBA section for their TrueCities series. He also fist-bumped with Kanye West once. Follow @BlazerBanter on twitter for more Blazers and NBA news.

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