Pacers guard Victor Oladipo watches from the bench in the Pacers re-start.
Orlando, FL - JULY 23: Victor Oladipo #4 of the Indiana Pacers looks on during a scrimmage against the Portland Trail Blazers on July 23, 2020 at The Arena at ESPN Wide World of Sports in Orlando, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2020 NBAE (Photo by David Dow/NBAE via Getty Images)

Victor Oladipo Optimistic About Playing In Orlando Regular Season Re-Start

INDIANAPOLISThe drama appears to be over on whether or not Victor Oladipo will play in the NBA bubble re-start.

Following the Pacers final practice on Friday before their regular season re-start, Oladipo said he is ‘optimistic’ about playing in the regular season re-start, which begins this Saturday night for Indiana, as they take on the 76ers.

“I felt good today (practicing) but we’ll see what tomorrow brings,” Oladipo said on Friday afternoon, following the final practice of the week. “It’s a day-by-day thing, but I’m optimistic. We’ll see how tonight goes and what tonight brings.”

Oladipo said if he wakes up Saturday feeling good, then he’ll play against the 76ers.

Since the Pacers arrived in Orlando more than three weeks ago, Oladipo has participated in every single practice, with no restrictions.

The guard said the decision to play each game in Orlando will be ‘day-to-day’ depending on how his knee and body responds. Just because he plays on Saturday doesn’t mean he will definitely play in the remainder of the games in Orlando.

Nate McMillan said on Friday that he will have some minutes restrictions on a few of his guys early in the regular season re-start slate.

After waffling on this decision over the past month or so, Oladipo’s decision will come after he participated fully in all three Indiana scrimmages in Orlando.

In the three scrimmage games, Oladipo was 13-of-38 (34 percent) form the floor and 7-of-19 (36 percent) from behind the arc.

Oladipo did struggle inside the arc, and getting to the foul line in the scrimmages. He shot 31 percent on two-point attempts and got to the foul line just once in 76 minutes of action.

There were definitely spurts of Oladipo looking spry and close to his normal self from a speed and burst standpoint. His jumpshot looked in rhythm at times, but he ended the scrimmage run falling right around his career average.

Most importantly, Oladipo continued to say his body felt better after games than it did earlier in the calendar year when he played 13 games in his return from tearing the quad tendon in his right knee back in January 2019.

During the final 8 games of the regular season, the Pacers will typically play every other night, with just one back-to-back (Monday: Wizards, Tuesday: Suns).

The Pacers will not have Domantas Sabonis (foot) when the regular season starts back up this weekend. He remains ‘out indefinitely’ while he seeks treatment outside of the bubble in Los Angeles.

Pacers Regular Season Re-Start Schedule

-76ers, 8/1 (Saturday), 7:00 PM

-Wizards, 8/3 (Monday), 4:00 PM

-Magic, 8/4 (Tuesday), 6:00 PM

-Suns, 8/6 (Thursday), 4:00 PM

-Lakers, 8/8 (Saturday), 6:00 PM

-Heat, 8/10 (Monday), 8:00 PM

-Rockets, 8/12 (Wednesday), 4:00 PM

-Heat, 8/14 (Friday), TBD

Current Eastern Conference Standings

1. Milwaukee (53-12)

2. Toronto (46-18), 6.5 games back

3. Boston (43-21), 9.5 games back

4. Miami (41-24), 12 games back

5. Indiana (39-26), 14 games back

6. Philadelphia (39-26), 14 games back

7. Brooklyn (30-34), 22.5 games back

8. Orlando (30-35), 23 games back

9. Wizards (24-40), 28.5 games back

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