Jackson Doesn't Expect To Play Against Nuggets
By Randy Renner
Thunder backup point guard Reggie Jackson told reporters this morning, "I don't think I'll be able to go tonight," when asked if he expects to play in OKC's home opener against the Denver Nuggets.
"God could touch me and bring me back tonight, that's possible, but right now I don't think I'm gonna be able to go," Jackson said. "I could just wake up in a few hours and feel great, just not sure."
The Thunder are already without starting point guard Russell Westbrook who underwent successful surgery today on the broken index finger on his right hand. Westbrook officially now expected to miss at least the next month.
If Jackson can't play tonight the Thunder will have to rely on Sebastian Telfair who is the only healthy point guard currently on the roster.
The Thunder will also be without Jeremy Lamb tonight who continues to recover from a strained lower back and of course they continue to deal with the long term absences of Kevin Durant, Anthony Morrow, Mitch McGary and Grant Jerrett.
That adds up to seven players out and just eight who are healthy enough to be in uniform against unless Jackson's right ankle feels better by gametime.
"Gotta try to get the hex off us, we're praying for each and everybody daily, just hoping that one day we can come in and then leave with the same health. We're just all trying to get better."
Jackson had also hoped to reach an agreement with the Thunder on a contract extension but that didn't happen.
"You hope for the best and expect the worst in everything, it didn't get done and the unfortunately the deadline passed but it happens, can't do anything about it now."
Jackson stressed through the summer he wanted to be a starter and in particular the starter at point guard. He got that opportunity last season when he filled in for Westbrook who at that time was recovering from additional knee surgery. Now he will have that opportunity again while Westbrook recovers from finger surgery.
But that's not the way Jackson wanted to be promoted.
"When I said command a team I didn't mean being a temporary starter or anything like that, so I'll just try to fill my role while I'm here and when I get back I'm just gonna try and stay healthy and play to the best of my ability."
Staying healthy has been a huge problem for the Thunder, the team hasn't been at 100 percent since before training camp started but despite all the losses Jackson said, "we still feel like we've got the talent to win games, we just have to find ways to do so."