Philadelphia 76ers guard Tyrese Maxey has made "great progress" in his recovery from a small fracture in his left foot and is "close" to returning to the court, head coach Doc Rivers told reporters Friday.
Rivers also indicated that when Maxey returns, his minutes will be restricted.
Maxey suffered the fracture in a Nov. 18 win over the Milwaukee Bucks, and ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported he would miss three to four weeks.
On Dec. 9, Wojnarowski indicated Maxey was expected to return from his injury before Christmas, but he's out of the lineup for Friday's game against the Los Angeles Clippers, and it's unlikely he suits up Sunday against the New York Knicks.
Maxey's injury was initially a tough blow for the Sixers. They have gone 10-5 in his absence thanks to a current six-game win streak, but they went 4-5 without him from Nov. 19 through Dec. 5.
The 22-year-old was having his best season in the NBA, averaging 22.9 points, 3.5 rebounds, 4.4 assists and 1.0 steal in 15 games while shooting 46.2 percent from the floor and 42.2 percent from deep.
Maxey's impending return comes at a great time for Philadelphia, which has climbed to fifth in the Eastern Conference with an 18-12 record.
The 76ers will need Maxey in the lineup to continue to rise in the standings and compete for one of the East's top playoff spots.