Kelly Oubre Jr.’s status a mystery after reportedly being out for Orlando

Jul 12, 2020, 4:04 PM

(AP Photo/Matt York)...

(AP Photo/Matt York)

(AP Photo/Matt York)

Here’s what we know.

Phoenix Suns wing Kelly Oubre Jr. was “expected” to be out for the team’s eight games in Orlando as he continues to rehab after meniscus surgery in early March, according to a report from The Athletic’s Shams Charania on June 17. 

This follows owner Robert Sarver stating on Arizona Sports’ Burns & Gambo June 4 that he believes Oubre will play.

“Yes,” he said. “I expect he will play, yes.”

Alright, that was just a mixup. It’s fine. Those happen. So, like, he’s out, right?

Well, the team hasn’t officially stated as much as they typically would through a release or whathaveyou. So, as the journalists do, the question came for head coach Monty Williams the next time he was available.

“I can’t answer the question about Kelly because I don’t know the medical side and his personal needs and that kind of thing,” Williams said on July 1. “I think that’s something you may have to ask (general manager) James (Jones) about.”

OK! We’ll ask James then!

“Kelly’s been here and rehabbing and so my expectation for him is the same as any other player: come in every day, practice with the team, work and compete and get yourself in a position to play and hopefully that’s before Orlando hits,” he said on July 6.


Jones said during that same availability that not all players would be traveling with the team to Walt Disney World the next day but Charania’s report noted that Oubre would be traveling with the team.

Through the wonders of social media, Oubre was seen getting on the plane and was later sharing his bubble hotel room look on Instagram.

Right. So he’s there. Is he practicing?

Let’s check that ole’ social media again!

Aha! There he is! With a basketball! Let’s ask coach again, then.

“He does a little bit of court work but for the most part he’s on the side rehabbing and trying to get himself in tip-top (shape),” Williams said Saturday. “He’s in good shape, but he’s not in the type of game shape that he wants to be in. He’s healthy, he looks great, body looks great, he’s got his bounce.”

From that one answer, it sounds like there’s a decent chance Oubre could play. They’ve got two more weeks still to ramp up. I mean, that’s at least how I interpret it. You’re here with me seeing all I’ve seen, so make the call for yourself.

A decent hypothesis based off this information and logic is that Oubre was indeed “expected” to be out in mid-June, and that very well could be the case, but he’s working through it with the team to 1) get back to 100% anyway and 2) on the off-chance he recovers quicker than expected and is good to go.

Keep your detective hats on the next few weeks, everyone.

Empire of the Suns

Frank Vogel, Chris Paul, Phoenix Suns...

Kevin Zimmerman

What does Frank Vogel’s hire tell us about how Suns build the roster?

Frank Vogel agreeing to become the Phoenix Suns' head coach gives us a North Star of sorts for how the team will begin constructing a roster.

4 days ago

Head Coach Frank Vogel of the Los Angeles Lakers coaches against the Denver Nuggets at Ball Arena o...

Kellan Olson

Frank Vogel sets tone for Suns’ makeover, steps toward 1st title

Hiring Frank Vogel is a solid yet fairly predictable and uninspiring direction from the Suns. That doesn't mean it's a bad thing.

4 days ago

General view of action between the Phoenix Mercury and the Chicago Sky during the second half of th...

Kellan Olson

Phoenix Suns, Mercury partner with city to pursue future All-Star games

The Phoenix Suns and Mercury are working directly with the city of Phoenix and other parties in a pursuit of future All-Star games.

12 days ago

Nikola Jokic, Bam Adebayo...

Kevin Zimmerman

A guide to being compelled by the likely Nuggets-Heat NBA Finals

It can be factual that the Denver Nuggets and Miami Heat will not draw as many viewers as would the Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics.

12 days ago

Chris Paul...

Kellan Olson

Suns face complex avenues for potentially moving on from Chris Paul

The Phoenix Suns know what they want to get done this offseason with what will be some type of roster makeover.

14 days ago

Tyronn Lue, Clippers...

Kevin Zimmerman

Empire of the Suns: Who we like as a new Phoenix head coach

The pros and cons of the Monty Williams hire and who would fit best around him as the next Phoenix Suns head coach.

21 days ago

Kelly Oubre Jr.’s status a mystery after reportedly being out for Orlando