January 2012
« Dec    

Category Cloud

2008 Football Season (188)
2008-09 Basketball Season (465)
2009 Football Season (136)
2009-10 Basketball Season (308)
2010 Football Season (244)
2010-11 Basketball Season (325)
2011 Baseball Season (37)
2011 Football Season (148)
2011-12 Basketball Season (163)
2012 Football Season (6)
850 The Buzz (6)
ACC (27)
ACC Baseball Tournament (4)
ACC Basketball (410)
ACC Bloggers Roundtable (1)
ACC Blogs (8)
ACC Football (224)
ACC Tournament (100)
ACC/Big Ten Challenge (10)
AD Search (8)
Analysis (129)
Anti-Duke (33)
Bad Officiating (9)
Beating Michigan St. (1)
Blogger Q&A (6)
Blogging (63)
Blogpoll (6)
Bowl Games (20)
Butch Davis Watch (9)
Caption This (1)
Car Care Bowl (3)
Carolina Hurricanes (16)
Carrier Classic (7)
Carrier Game (1)
CBI (3)
Cheaters (3)
Class Acts (4)
Coaching Search (55)
College Football (45)
College World Series (35)
Conference Realignment (5)
Daddy (4)
Dean Smith (10)
Dick Baddour (4)
Director's Cup (2)
Drafts (100)
Duke (10)
ESPN (36)
Final Four (54)
Former Players (18)
Game Thread (89)
General Sports Blogs (14)
Good Bad and Ugly Report (8)
History (38)
Holidays (2)
Idiot Analysts (15)
Idiotic Columns (24)
Injury Report (109)
International Basketball (15)
Justice (12)
Legal Trouble (5)
Life at Home (5)
Like Death Warmed Over (1)
Local Media/Blogs (90)
Locked Comments (2)
Losing to a Football School Sucks (1)
McDonalds AA Game (5)
MLB (9)
Music City Bowl (3)
Naismith Hall of Fame (10)
National Championship (44)
National Signing Day (1)
NBA (126)
NC Pro Am (6)
NC Sports Hall of Fame (2)
NCAA Baseball Tournament (18)
NCAA Basketball (109)
NCAA Investigation (204)
NCAA Tournament (314)
News (1)
NFL (31)
NIT (32)
Not Really A Sport (3)
Odds and Ends (10)
Official Stances (3)
Olympics (3)
PGA Golf (7)
Player Profile (32)
Player Transfers (5)
Player Tweets (2)
Polls (4)
Radio (1)
Rampant Stupidity (18)
Random Stuff (1)
Rant Mode (7)
Raycom Sports Blog Network (2)
Recruiting (97)
Referees (2)
Reflections (4)
Retraction (1)
Rivals (28)
Roy (29)
Satire/Humor (46)
Season Preview (12)
Senior Night (2)
Site Issues (2)
Sports in General (16)
Spring Practice (7)
Summer of Deon (22)
Team Scrilla (2)
The Duke Game (14)
The NCAA (30)
THF ACC Awards (3)
THF Community (4)
THF Countdown (32)
THF Family (6)
THF Fantasy Draft (1)
THF Tournament Pick 'em (4)
Total Lack of Class (2)
Tragic News (14)
Triangle Pigskin Preview (1)
Trolls (24)
Twitter (3)
Twitter Blog (1)
Twitter Live Blog (1)
UNC All Sports (32)
UNC Baseball (117)
UNC Basketball (1976)
UNC Blogs/Sites (1)
UNC Fans (1)
UNC Football (994)
UNC Men's Soccer (3)
UNC Women's Soccer (1)
UNC-Duke Game (24)
UNC-Duke Rivalry (8)
Uncategorized (8)
Unlinkables (11)
Vacation (7)
Weekend Open Thread (1)
Weird Crap (3)
Whiny Coaches (2)
Wisdom of Fools (2)
World Cup Soccer (1)
Year of Hell (10)
Zeke Smith Photos (4)

WP Cumulus Flash tag cloud by Roy Tanck and Luke Morton requires Flash Player 9 or better.

McDonald Injury Update

Ahead of schedule.

Roy Williams provided an update on junior wing guard Leslie McDonald during his Friday press conference.

Is there a date in mind on when you need to make a decision on Leslie?
“No… When he got going, his rehab has been sensational, it’s been off the charts. He’s been ahead of every expectation… He practiced in 5-on-5 stuff on Tuesday a pretty good bit of practice. And Wednesday had some soreness so we held him out. Today he went through a lot of practice and we’ll see how it feels tomorrow… I think I said this early: Human nature, you want to say, ‘Why would you give up a whole year, just to play half a year?’ So that’s been in the back of my mind since the start. So that’s something we want to see. And to me … [a decision] is not going to be very long from now. In my opinion, why would you wait until February to bring a guy back? That wouldn’t be very wise, in my opinion.”

On McDonald’s play in practice:
“First day, he didn’t miss a shot. He was off the charts. And today, he didn’t make a shot. He said they fouled him all the time. So mentally, he’s there. When he misses, it’s somebody else’s fault.”

My thinking on McDonald’s status throughout has been that he shouldn’t return this season. Part of that was predicated on the expected rehab period which had McDonald returning in late February/early March. I also am not crazy about injecting a player back into the mix late in the season when everyone is comfortable with their roles. And yes, I selfishly would love to see McDonald in Chapel Hill two more season, especially if he has made strides as a scorer.

Now that it looks like McDonald might be ready almost two months early, that does change things up a bit. Granted it doesn’t alter my misgivings about introducing a new player into the lineup at this stage in the season. However the notion that UNC could get something on the order of 10-12 regular season games plus as many as nine postseason games, bringing McDonald back doesn’t seem as crazy as I first thought.

The problem with bringing McDonald back now is what it may do so the current rotation. Looking at the minutes played, who ends up losing time if McDonald returns? I don’t think Reggie Bullock, who is a key player for this team, should see his minutes drop. P.J. Hairston is at 12 mpg right now so could you really take time from him? Strickland is at 25 mpg with some of those being played at the point. As we move into February, Kendall Marshall is going to start creeping into the low and mids-30s in terms of minutes played. Likewise Harrison Barnes will probably see his minutes rise which takes away time Bullock or Hairston or theoretically McDonald might get at the wing forward spot. I suppose we could see Bullock or Barnes rotated to the four with less Justin Watts on the floor. The list of permutations and possibilities goes on and on.

Of course if McDonald does return, whatever Roy Williams might do is going to be similar to the way things would have been had McDonald been healthy from Day 1. The difference now is the players who have been on the court have settled into roles and have reasonable expectations of what their minutes will be on any given night. This goes back to my original misgivings concerning bringing a player back at this stage of the season, especially at a position UNC is heavily loaded at as it is. If McDonald were a post player, it would be a nice addition of depth. On the wings it raises a question of players losing minutes.

This may be much ado about nothing in the end. Roy and McDonald may ultimately conclude redshirting is the best option. Whatever gets decided Roy is paid a fat salary to work it all out and I have plenty of confidence in his ability to handle this kind of scenario.

Share This Post:
[Bloglines] [del.icio.us] [Digg] [Facebook] [MySpace] [Technorati] [Windows Live] [Yahoo!] [Email]

8 comments to McDonald Injury Update

  • deepenwide

    it’s a good bet that he will be red shirted. The reason to wait to make the decision is if Strickland or Bullock become injured.

  • Tarheelsincebirth

    Redshirt him….and yes, the reason to wait to make a decision is if Dex or Reggie gets hurt. Very good point. Let’s just hope that doesn’t happen

  • gregrustin

    having a solid hot shooting 2 guard in the wings just in case of injury aint a bad problem to have. I desire red shirt which lets him fight for the starter position from full strength next season. he would have been starter this year based on his summer BLOWUP at NCCU. Welcome back LMac.

  • 52bgJ

    yes indeed, welcome back (hopefully)!

  • Thrawnyboy

    I really hope they decide to do what’s best for LMac in the long run rather than what they think is best for the team this year. Though that could very well result in him being healthy and ready to come back to play on a potential national championship team.

  • scl11

    My preference is still for McDonald to redshirt, but if he does return I think you’ll see more of Barnes at the 4 & more of Strick at the pt., and zero Watts (hopefully).

  • LarryS

    ^This might cut down some on Marshall’s torrid assist pace, but it would be a pretty good way to work LMac into the lineup and not take much away from Hairston or Bullock.

    If McDonald plays, one would think he should at least get 6-8 MPG to give him a chance to get in game shape and find somewhat of a rhythm.

  • AZACCFan

    LMac is very unlikely to play this year. Because physically he cannot do it. Rehab from ACL reconstruction takes one year at least.

    Just going through the motions of being at practice is not the same as playing in games.

    Right now there are 4 guards ahead of him (at least).

    He would be back only for a few weeks at best. Playing a few minutes a game and losing a year of eligibility for that is crazy.

    Plus if LMac harbors any thoughts of playing past college, he will need to take advantage of every possible minute of his college eligibility.

Leave a Reply