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News » Redd to have MRI today Knee injury puts a damper on guard's stellar season

Redd to have MRI today Knee injury puts a damper on guard's stellar season

Redd to have MRI today  Knee injury puts a damper on guard's stellar season
Michael Redd was making a strong comeback from an ankle injury that sidelined him for 14 games earlier this season, and some league observers were mentioning him as a candidate for next month's All-Star Game.

Now the Milwaukee Bucks could be without him again for an extended period, after the shooting guard suffered a strained left knee on a play late in the third quarter against Sacramento on Saturday night at the Bradley Center.

Redd limped off the court and was on crutches in the locker room after the game. He will undergo an MRI exam on his knee today to determine the extent of the damage.

Redd said he twisted his knee when he landed on Luke Ridnour's foot after making a drive to the basket. He fell to the floor on the sideline and immediately grabbed his leg.

"It's part of the game," Redd said. "I'm disappointed, but I'm going to be OK. I've overcome so much adversity, and I've had numerous injuries throughout the years. But I'll be back, and our team will continue to keep fighting."

Richard Jefferson scored 20 points to help the Bucks pull out a 106-104 victory over the Kings, and he said the team had to keep its focus after Redd left the floor.

"It's our job just to keep playing," Jefferson said. "No one's going to feel sorry for you. It's a part of this league. There are a lot of teams out there that are dealing with injuries, and we're just another one.

"Whether it's Philly or whether it's Utah not having Carlos Boozer. It's how you handle it that determines the type of team you are."

TNT analyst and former National Basketball Association coach Mike Fratello recently said Redd was among three players who deserved to be in the All-Star Game and were playing better than Allen Iverson, voted to the Eastern Conference starting lineup by the fans.

"My Eastern guys I would have considered, I think Vince Carter should have been considered over AI (Allen Iverson) in that spot because Vince has done a heck of a job keeping the Nets right around the .500 mark," Fratello said.

"Another guy who has come on gangbusters since his injury is Michael Redd; he has been terrific for Milwaukee and their surge lately. And Joe Johnson in Atlanta has got that team on the winning side, with a lot of injuries. AI would be the one I would question."

Those players still have a chance to make the Eastern Conference squad when all-star reserves are named by the coaches on Thursday.

And other guards in the East are making strong cases, too, including former Bucks guard Mo Williams in Cleveland; Milwaukee native and former University of Wisconsin star Devin Harris with New Jersey; point guard Jameer Nelson in Orlando and former Bucks guard Ray Allen in Boston.

Prior to the injury Saturday, Redd had returned to form over the past two months.

He was averaging a team-leading 21.2 points while shooting 81% from the foul line and 37% from three-point range. He was playing nearly 37 minutes per game for a Bucks team which holds the eighth and final East playoff position.

Redd has only appeared in one All-Star Game, during the 2003-'04 season when it was played in Los Angeles. That was a successful year for the Bucks, who finished at .500 under Terry Porter and made the playoffs.

But Redd's ability also has been recognized in his selection to the U.S. Olympic team, which reclaimed the gold medal during the Beijing Games. He believes his work alongside Kobe Bryant, LeBron James and the other U.S. Olympians has translated to his play under Bucks coach Scott Skiles.

"My intensity defensively has helped my offense," Redd said. "I learned a lot from playing USA Basketball. When Coach Skiles came, I was used to it. And he challenged me to become a better defensive player."

Players on winning teams are generally favored in all-star voting. Atlanta coach Mike Woodson said he and his assistants would sit down and consult this weekend before Woodson turns in his ballot.

"I think both of those guys are all-stars," Woodson said, referring to Redd and Johnson. "I think Michael Redd has always played at a high level."

Johnson is averaging 21.7 points, 6.0 assists and 4.5 rebounds while playing in all 42 games for Atlanta, which holds the fourth-seeded position in the East with a 26-16 record.

Williams, who was traded by the Bucks as part of a three-team deal in the off-season, has blended superbly with James since moving to the Cavaliers.

Copyright 2009, Journal Sentinel Inc. All rights reserved. (Note: This notice does not apply to those news items already copyrighted and received through wire services or other media.)

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Added: January 25, 2009


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