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Video: Nets’ Caris LeVert’s first basket since horrific injury

Caris LeVert, Nets

The widespread assumption was that Caris LeVert’s breakout season was over after the prolific guard suffered a gruesome foot injury on November 12th. The Brooklyn Nets, however, announced less than 24 hours later that not only would surgery be unnecessary to repair his dislocated right foot, but LeVert also had a good chance to return to the court before the end of 2018-19.

Indeed, LeVert is back on Friday night against the Chicago Bulls, picking up right where he left off before Thanksgiving. After receiving a raucous standing ovation from the Barclays Center crowd, LeVert scored his first points since the injury on this herky-jerky drive and floater over the outstretched arms of Robin Lopez.

LeVert was one of the most pleasant surprises of the season’s early going, averaging 18.4 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 3.7 assists per game on 47.5 percent shooting while playing dogged perimeter defense. Conventional wisdom said the Nets’ playoff hopes ended with his extended absence, but Kenny Atkinson’s team has instead withstood additional injuries to key players like Spencer Dinwiddie to currently rank sixth in the Eastern Conference at 29-27.

With LeVert back, the Nets will have a luxury of parading a dangerous backcourt rotation featuring himself, Dinwiddie, when he returns, and D’Angelo Russell.