Top NBA Draft prospect Michael Porter Jr. will undergo back surgery

Michael Porter Jr. was the number two prospect coming out of high school. He’s an athletic 6’10” forward with an NBA-ready body. He’s a smooth scorer that uses his skills and timing to get to the paint or launch outside jumpers.

Porter Jr. was born in Missouri and left to attend high school in Seattle Washington. He came back to Missouri to play for his home town college, the University of Missouri. There were lofty expectations from him. He was supposed to lead Mizzou to the NCAA Tourney where he could showcase his skills in the biggest stage. He was also touted as a possible number one pick in the 2018 NBA Draft.

But all of that is on hold for now.

Porter Jr. played just two minutes in his first game of the NCAA season and left the game due to unknown circumstances. He then missed the succeeding games of the Tigers. The worst scenario was realized today when Mizzou Basketball released a statement regarding Porter Jr.’s injuries.

This makes it official, Porter Jr. won’t be suiting up for the remainder of this year’s NCAA games. This is a blow to Mizzou who saw the forward as a key piece to bring their basketball program back to prominence. But For head coach Cuonzo Martin, the health of Porter Jr. is more important.

“Our top priority as a program is the well-being of our student-athletes, so Michael beginning this process to be 100 percent healthy is important to all of us. Our focus has been on Michael’s well-being, just like every other player in our locker room. We will continue to work every day to build Mizzou Basketball into a program to be proud of. We’re preparing now for a trip that is a tremendous opportunity. I’m excited to get after it in Orlando.”

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As for Porter Jr., he remains positive despite the devastating news.

“I really appreciate the support of my family and the Mizzou Men’s Basketball program as I begin this process. I’m thankful for all the kind words and messages I’ve received from fans. Those mean a lot to me. I cannot wait to be completely healthy and playing the game I love, once again.”

Here’s to hoping Porter Jr. makes a full recovery and continues his path to the NBA.

Photo from CBS Sports

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