Hornacek: Suns expect Bledsoe back within a week

Eric Bledsoe has been out since Dec. 30 but is expected to retun within a week.

PHOENIX — Suns coach Jeff Hornacek confirmed before Thursday’s game the team expects guard Eric Bledsoe back within a week.

The Arizona Republic reported Wednesday night Bledsoe would return by Wednesday, and Hornacek essentially confirmed that is the expectation.

"I would hope so," Hornacek said before the Suns’ game against the Thunder. "That’s the plan."

Bledsoe, out since Dec. 30 with right knee injury that required arthroscopic surgery, has participated in 5-on-5 scrimmaging in practices three times over the past week. It was initially believed Bledsoe, who averaged 18.0 points and 5.8 assists per game in 24 games, could be out for the season.

Hornacek has said Bledsoe won’t be on a minutes limit when he returns but that how much he plays and in what capacity will depend on how fast he catches up from a conditioning standpoint. Hornacek will also have to shuffle rotations a bit as he works Bledsoe back into the mix.

"You have to get him in at some, and it’s always an adjustment, especially for a guy who’s been out for a while," Hornacek said. "Guys’ minutes will be different, they’re going to be playing with different groups of players, so there’s always that little adjustment.

"We have to somehow figure out how to get him into that without screwing up our rotation, and obviously every game is big from this point on."

With back-to-back road games against the Warriors and Clippers on Sunday and Monday, Wednesday’s home game against the Cavaliers appears a likely target for Bledsoe’s return.  

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