Miami Heat center Greg Oden has been inactive for 26 straight games. He’s not technically hurt or injured, he’s just not ready to play.
And Dwyane Wade admitted that Oden has “gotten down” and “a little frustrated” while waiting his opportunity to join the Heat on the court.
Still, Wade’s tone seemed to acknowledge the widely held belief that Oden is still a long way from being cleared to play.
“His attitude has been great,” Wade said. “I’m sure at times he has gotten down and got a little frustrated, but he’s giving himself a chance. He is listening to the guys who know the bodies very well — way more than us athletes.
Wade added that Oden “is doing everything they ask him to do, so it’s giving him an opportunity to get back on the court whenever that time comes.”
There were a ton of “patient” references in Wade’s words, which basically means that it’s going to be some more time until we see Oden back on the court.
Despite all of that, we need to remember that the Heat didn’t sign – or take a chance on – Oden for December and January. They did it for April, May and June. Specifically for that impending Eastern Conference Finals matchup against the Indiana Pacers, but you understand why Oden is growing frustrated. He’s human, just like we all are.
Hopefully we’ll be able to see Oden back on the court. If that preseason debut/return moment was special, wait until he makes a regular season debut.