Central Notes: Jennings, Irving, Harris, Butler

After playing in his first game in nearly 11 months Saturday, Brandon Jennings was among three players recalled from the D-League today by the Pistons, tweets Marc J. Spears of Yahoo Sports. Jennings, who suffered a ruptured left Achilles January 24th, was sharp for Grand Rapids with 11 points and 12 assists in 27 minutes, according to Rod Beard of the Detroit News. “He’s looking good; he’s still trying to get acclimated and get back,” said Reggie Jackson, one of several Pistons teammates who attended the game. “You see the burst and the flashes and we all know the player he can be. … He’s someone we’re going to need when he gets back.” Beard speculated that Jennings could return to NBA action December 26th or 29th. Reggie Bullock and Darrun Hilliard were also recalled from Grand Rapids.

There’s more from the Central Division:

  • Jennings’ decision to use Grand Rapids as part of his rehab process may help change the way the D-League is used, writes Peter J. Wallner of MLive. Other players have practiced with D-League affiliates when coming back from injuries, but Jennings is the first big name to use the minor league similar to the way baseball players do. “I think this the tip of the iceberg and is the way the league should be used,” said Grand Rapids coach Otis Smith. “… For them [Pistons] to have the forethought or comfort to have him play with us is beneficial to them, but really sends a message and is beneficial for this league.”
  • The Cavaliers are also getting an injured point guard back, as Kyrie Irving is expected to play today against the Sixers, according to Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today. It will be his first action since fracturing his kneecap in Game 1 of the NBA Finals. “There is no specific reason on why now,” Irving said. “… I finally got the full clearance from my doctors and our training staff, and that’s all I needed.”
  • The Cavaliers have recalled Joe Harris from their D-League affiliate in Canton, the team announced today. He has appeared in 10 games with the Charge, averaging 16.4 points, and five with Cleveland.
  • The Bulls have internal concerns about Jimmy Butler‘s “hesitancy” over the offense installed by new coach Fred Hoiberg, tweets K.C. Johnson of The Chicago Tribune. The tweet comes in the wake of critical comments Butler directed at Hoiberg Saturday night.
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