Nets guard Caris LeVert will return for Friday's game against the Chicago Bulls after suffering a gruesome injury in November that elicited thoughts and prayers from numerous NBA players.
LeVert, who has not played since suffering a dislocated foot on Nov. 12, avoided surgery and suffered only minor ligament damage, and Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson said the team would ease him back into the lineup.
"My feeling is let's just build him up from a physical standpoint," Atkinson said, according to the Associated Press. "From a basketball technical standpoint, I think it's going to take some time quite honestly until he catches his rhythm. I can't tell you how long that's going to be. The most important thing is he's right physically, and we'll build up the basketball part."
The 24-year-old LeVert, who averaged 18.4 points, 4.3 rebounds and 3.7 assists in 14 games this season, said he is ready to contribute in whatever way he can.
"However I can help," LeVert said. "They've got it going right now and playing really well offensively and defensively. I'm just looking to be another one of those guys who gives us more depth, plays hard defensively and tries to make plays on offense."
The former first-round pick out of Michigan has made significant progress recently, practicing with Brooklyn's G League affiliate in Long Island and returning to 5-on-5 drills.
Brooklyn, which at 29-27 currently holds the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference, is 21-9 in its last 30 games after losing 10 of the first 12 games LeVert missed.