INDIANAPOLIS – Pistons fans' hearts all skipped a beat when the reports started rolling in that Kentavious Caldwell-Pope would not return after injuring his right Achilles tendon. Fortunately, it does not look to be a repeat of Brandon Jennings' season ending Achilles injury.
Stan Van Gundy clarified after the game that KCP's injury first flared up Tuesday night against the Miami Heat when he went down at the end of the first half but was able to return to the game. KCP warmed up against the Pacers last night and expected to go. But just a few minutes into the game, he found he wasn't getting any lift and pulled himself out.
The injury didn't seem to slow him down too much Tuesday, as he played 16 minutes and scored 9 points in the second half.
Caldwell-Pope was able to remain on the bench throughout the game on Wednesday, regularly working with the team's physical therapist Arnie Kander during breaks. He was able to move around reasonably well, although at times rather gingerly.
During the post-game, KCP said that he expects to return soon.
"I wanted to come back, but just to be on the safe side I just sat the game out," Caldwell-Pope said. "I didn't want to keep injuring it. It's not going to be long. Do treatments tomorrow and see how it feels Friday."
Starting tomorrow night, the Pistons have four games over the next six nights before getting a week off for the All Star break.
With Caldwell-Pope out last night, the Pistons leaned heavily on their bench with a large role for Jodie Meeks and the most minutes for Cartier Martin since early December.