Orlando Magic forward Jeff Green has been shut down for the remainder of the season due to a persistent back injury, the team confirmed on Wednesday.
Jeff Green (back) has been shut down for remainder of the season.
— Ruben Badillo (@1RubenBadillo) April 5, 2017
The veteran forward has missed the Magic’s last seven games due to a sore lower back and has not played since March 20th. Green’s back problems have been persistent for the majority of the season, as he often experienced back spasms that would see him exit and miss games as a result.
Green has been disappointing during his stint with the Magic after signing a one-year, $15 million deal back in July and has been a relative scapegoat for Orlando during a torrid season. They currently find themselves second to the bottom of the Eastern Conference with a dismal 27-51 record.
In Green’s absence, his minutes are expected to be divided between starting power forward Aaron Gordon and second-year swingman Mario Hezonja, while new acquisitions Marcus Georges-Hunt and Patricio Garino will have a few minutes shared between them as well.
Prior to the trade that saw Serge Ibaka depart for the Toronto Raptors, and Terrence Ross arrive in Orlando, Green had been utilized as a backup small forward, but since then has been moved to the second unit’s power forward. While this has seen some fairly impressive individual results for Gordon, Green has been unremarkable.
Aaron Gordon is 9/16 from the 3-PT line in his past 3 games.
— The Lando (@TheLando__) April 5, 2017
Over the course of 69 games, the nine-year well-traveled forward is having a career-low season with the Magic, averaging 9.2 points on 39.2-percent shooting and 3.1 rebounds per contest off the bench.
The following is from Josh Robbins‘ report in the Orlando Sentinel:
“Their plan is to shut me down for the rest of the year and let the young guys play,” Green said Wednesday.
With the Magic wallowing near the foot of the conference and with little to play for, players like Hezonja, who is now being utilized as a back-up power forward in small ball lineups, and new D-League recruits Georges-Hunt and Garino will be given a chance to impress.
“I want to play,” Green said. “I wanted to finish out the games, but I’ve got to make sure I’m right before I step out on the floor. But it was the team’s decision to shut me down.