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Wednesday, February 5, 2014


It sure is good to see Adreian Payne getting off the exer-cycle and onto the basketball court. His return should be guided with an injury-management approach during ball games. As I explained two weeks ago, Payne should be a "second-half player" as he gets back to full speed.

A key benefit to this approach would allow Izzo to continue his first-half rotations as he has been doing withiout AP in the lineup. Everybody will know he's joining them in the second half. Player performances may improve early in games if several guys realize they have nothing to lose and only playing time to gain.

As he works back into shape, Payne would minimize the stress on his foot by only playing one stretch of action per day. He could gradually be brought back to limited first-half roles.

My recommendation is to MANAGE THE INJURY. If Payne starts a game but can't finish, it may prove debilitating to team morale. If he doesn't start, but comes in at the end, it could be rejuvenating to everybody.

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