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NBA New Orleans Pelicans

New Orleans Pelicans’ Austin Rivers Back to Doing Basketball Activities

New Orleans Pelicans’ Austin Rivers Back to Doing Basketball Activities

Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

New Orleans Pelicans guard Austin Rivers got the cast on his broken removed and is back to doing basketball activities. The 20-year-old is determined to be 100 percent ready once training camp begins later this year.

Rivers suffered the injury on March 6 in a loss to the Los Angeles Lakers while attempting a steal. Instead, he broke his hand after he jammed it against Greivis Vasquez’s body. Rivers had recorded 10 points, two rebounds and converted 83.3 percent (5-for-6) of his shots from the field in 15 minutes prior to sustaining the injury.

The 10th overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft underwent surgery on his hand on March 12. However, that is old news, as he is ready to get back to work in preparation for the summer league and the 2013-14 NBA season. In fact, Rivers is making up for lost time as best as he can, but that does not mean the Pelicans will allow him to train at full speed. New Orleans will keep a close eye on him while he does his basketball activities just to make sure he does not do anything that could cause a setback.

The good news is Rivers has reportedly looked good during his on-court activities. Considering there is plenty of work to be done in order to improve on his less than stellar rookie season, it is good that Rivers’ work ethic appears to be at an all-time high. There is no question the California native is going to have to step up his game next season if he wants the Pelicans to believe he is capable of handling the job.

Rivers averaged 6.2 points, 2.1 assists and 1.8 rebounds in 61 games (26 starts) last season. He also shot 37.2 percent from the field and 32.6 percent from beyond the arc.