Michael Redd back at Bucks practice
Redd last played 13 months ago when he tore both the anterior cruciate ligament and the medial collateral ligament in his left knee on Jan. 10 against the Lakers in Los Angeles. He was away from Milwaukee with the club's permission, opting to rehabilitate back home in Columbus, Ohio.
"It feels great," Redd said after participating in practice. "It feels great. One of the happiest days of my career to come back and be a part of practice. To be on the court is a blessing, man. I kissed the court."
Redd has averaged 20.2 points in his 10-year career and was a gold-medal winning member of Team USA at the 2007 FIBA Americas Championship and at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, but has appeared in just 51 NBA games since.
"You really start to treasure things when you can't do them anymore," Redd said. "I missed the last two years of my career due to injury. Not that I didn't appreciate it before, but I appreciate it even more because I did miss it."
Redd, 31, missed the final 48 games of the 2009-2010 season and was out nine games from Nov. 3-21 with a strained left patella tendon. Then, it was seven more from Nov. 28 to Dec. 9 with left knee soreness.
His sore left knee cost him a considerable portion of the 2008-09 season. He played in 33 games and led Milwaukee in scoring for the sixth consecutive year at 21.2 points per game, but missed the last 35 games after tearing the ACL and MCL in his left knee on Jan. 24, 2009, against Sacramento.
Redd's first step will be to work out with team trainers to determine his next step.
"You can have all the great plans you want, and then all of a sudden something happens and there's a setback," coach Scott Skiles said. "Or, it goes the other way. You realize the guy is a lot further along. The medical staff has a hold of that."
Bucks center Andrew Bogut believes Redd could be back playing in games soon.
"He did 20 minutes," Bogut said of Redd's effort. "He can't obviously go through a full practice. It would be stupid for him to do so. He's got to build himself up until he's comfortable and ready. He did the warm-up drills and looked pretty good."
Bogut was asked if Redd might help the Bucks (21-34) turn around their season and make the playoffs for the second consecutive season.
"Any energy shot we can get will help us," Bogut said. "Obviously, he's about two weeks away from what I hear our trainers say."
Redd, a shooting guard who has made 427 starts in 568 games, said he had no preconceptions about how he would fit in.
"Basically, I'm new to this team," he said. "Whatever happens happens. Everybody knows what I can do. It's just a matter of getting me in basketball shape and playing again. Whatever I can do off the court, on the court, I'll do it."
He is being paid $18.3 million in the final year of a $91 million, six-year contract signed in 2005 and wants to play another three to five years.
Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press
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