Markelle Fultz Says He Is 'Not All the Way There' in Shoulder Injury Recovery

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured ColumnistMay 10, 2018

MIAMI, FL - APRIL 21: Markelle Fultz #20 of the Philadelphia 76ers warms up before Game Four of Round One of the 2018 NBA Playoffs against the Miami Heat at American Airlines Arena on April 21, 2018 in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Markelle Fultz
Mark Brown/Getty Images

Philadelphia 76ers guard Markelle Fultz told reporters at his exit interview Thursday that he isn't quite back at 100 percent despite being a month-and-a-half removed from his return to game action. 

"It's pretty good, really," Fultz said when asked about the strength of his bothersome right shoulder. "I'm not all the way there, but I definitely have a lot more work to do. Even if I was 100 percent, I would still want to get better. The grind starts now, just to keep working and get better each and every day." 

Fultz, the No. 1 overall pick in last year's draft, was limited to 14 regular-season games as a rookie because of right shoulder soreness and a scapular muscle imbalance. He did flash some potential after returning from his 68-game absence, as he averaged 7.6 points, 4.6 assists and 3.4 rebounds over his final 10 appearances.

The 19-year-old also became the youngest player in league history to record a triple-double when he registered 13 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists in the Sixers' regular-season finale against the Milwaukee Bucks

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Looking ahead, Fultz said he'll be willing to suit up for the Sixers' NBA Summer League team if the front office believes it's in his best interest. 

"That's something me and coach and them haven't discussed yet, but my biggest goal this year is just to improve in any way I can, really," he said. "So if that's what we all feel like is best for me, I'm for sure looking forward to doing it."    

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