Bobcats' ailing Brezec to miss season's first two weeks
The Charlotte Observer
November 01, 2006
I've got to take care of my body. It was a long summer -- Japan and Singapore and lots of tournaments. Exhausted and dehydrated, Charlotte Bobcats center Primoz Brezec will miss at least the first two weeks of the regular season to recover his health.
The Bobcats announced that decision this morning, and will likely start power forward Sean May in Brezec's place tonight in the season-opener against the Indiana Pacers. That effectively makes Emeka Okafor the Bobcats' starting center.
Brezec was worn down and sick much of the preseason, following a tiring summer playing for the Slovenian national team in the world championships. Brezec told the Observer this morning that he's through with year-round basketball.
'I'm done with the national team in the summertime,' Brezec said. 'I've got to take care of my body. It was a long summer -- Japan and Singapore and lots of tournaments.'
Brezec came down sick while in Wilmington for Bobcats training camp. During the illness he lost 15 pounds and still suffers from dehydration. He attempted to get back in shape too fast, he said, and all the extra work -- including nighttime running sessions -- worsened his condition.
'I knew it was a long summer, but this is tough,' Brezec said of having to miss the outset of the season. 'All this time I was just trying to get back in shapeA...My doctors told me not to do it. The best thing to do right now is rest everything so I can get back.'
Bobcats coach-general manager Bernie Bickerstaff has often said Brezec has an outsized sense of obligation; that it's his nature to work too hard in the off-season when rest -- both physical and mental -- would be more beneficial.
'Here's a guy who really works,' Bickerstaff said. 'It could be to his detriment sometimes.'
Bickerstaff called May the probable starter tonight. Whether May continues as a starter beyond tonight is 'contingent on effort and performance,' Bickerstaff said.
May had a fine preseason offensively but has struggled some with defensive assignments. He'd be matched tonight against either Al Harrington or Jermaine O'Neal for the Pacers.
Bickerstaff said he wouldn't consider moving rookie Adam Morrison into the starting lineup, as a replacement for Brezec, since the two are of such different size. Brezec is a 7-1 center, while Morrison, the third overall pick, is a 6-8 guard-forward.
Well, this makes me feel better. As for the bolded, god I miss him.