Former NBA big man and current Michigan head coach Juwan Howard underwent successful heart surgery on Friday, writes Tom Wywrot of the team’s website.
After a routine medical exam, it was discovered that Howard had an aortic aneurysm, which was successfully resected. His aortic valve was also repaired. The surgeon who performed the operation said Howard is expected to make a full recovery in six-to-12 weeks and could return to coaching in four-to-six weeks.
Associate head coach Phil Martelli will be the interim head coach while Howard recovers, according to Wywrot.
Howard, 50, played 19 years in the NBA, making his lone All-Star appearance in 1995/96. He won a pair of championships in a minor role with the Heat at the end of his playing career.
Howard’s son, Jett Howard, played under his father at Michigan and was selected 11th overall in June’s draft by Orlando.
Here are a few more odds and ends from around the basketball world:
- Michael Grange of Sportsnet.ca recently sat down for a lengthy interview with Canadian national team executive VP and GM Rowan Barrett following Canada’s historic bronze medal at the World Cup. When asked if the team would change its roster ahead of the 2024 Olympics in Paris, Barrett said it would be “irresponsible” to speculate at this point, because there are external factors at play, including the long NBA season. However, he did discuss what the national team would be looking for in broader terms. “Our focus is not to create an All-Star team,” Barrett said, per Grange. “We need to create the best team. And I think the proof of that was this summer. Our team was not an All-NBA, All-Star team. We had guys mixed in from the summer core and the winter core. There were some guys that just set screens; some guys, they were there just to pass the ball. Some guys weren’t going to play a lot, but they were there to scream out assignments and coverages to help guys execute the game plan. Some guys, the majority of their energy was in practice to make sure the practice level was high. And you can have subtraction by addition, too. So, we’ve got to be very careful, and very thoughtful and very strategic about how we’re going to build this team.”
- Will the NBA strictly implement its new player participation policy? Or will the league take a lax stance under certain circumstances? Brian Windhorst of ESPN explored that topic on NBA Today (YouTube link), noting that the rules will drastically impact some teams but others won’t have to worry about it at all, since those clubs haven’t had any All-Stars or All-NBA players for the past three seasons.
- In case you missed it, we published another And-Ones post yesterday and also passed along some international notes.