Tuesday , Sep , 16 , 2008 C.Y. Ellis

Greg Oden Down to 285 Pounds, Ready for Season

Greg Oden Down to 285 Pounds, Ready for SeasonWhile it’s usually only a couple of months from draft day to opening night for most rookies, Greg Oden has had to wait over a year to showcase his game on the NBA hardwood.  After major surgery and a lengthy rehab period, the seven-footer is now playing full-court five-on-five and looking like his old self again.  At the insistence of Portland’s athletic trainers, he’s even dropped fifteen pounds (now tipping the scales at 285) in order to stay agile enough to keep up with the fast-paced professional game.

Asked about his attitude towards the upcoming season, however, G.O. was surprisingly unenthusiastic.

“I’m excited, but I’m not like, ‘It’s coming up! It’s coming up!’ I’m like (and here he softens his voice), ‘It’s coming. Let’s get it on.’ "

Worryingly for fans and the organisation, he didn’t sound particularly confident about his injury either.

“I’m getting there,” Oden says. “I’m not going to say I’m in the best shape of my life, but it’s getting a lot better. I can tell the difference the past two weeks.”PortlandTribune.com

Is Oden hinting that he’s not quite ready to produce like a top pick or are these simply the words of an unusually mature twenty-something?  What do you think of Oden’s prospects for taking home the Rookie of the Year award?  Will he even stay healthy long enough to compete?  Drop your thoughts in the comment box at the bottom of the page.