Brandon Jennings has waited 11 months to get back into an NBA game.
He probably has another week or so to wait, but he’s taking an important step Tuesday night.
For the first time since tearing his Achilles’ tendon in January, Jennings will be active and in uniform when the Pistons play the Miami Heat on Tuesday and the Atlanta Hawks on Wednesday. He’s not expected to play unless there is an emergency – Steve Blake will continue to back up Reggie Jackson – but he’ll be there.
“He will be (in uniform); likely he doesn’t play,” Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy said Tuesday. “He’s available if something happens. It’s unlikely he play the next three games, but we’ll dress him.”
Jennings was averaging 15.4 points and 6.6 assists for the Pistons when he tore his Achilles’ tendon on Jan. 24 in Milwaukee – the city where he started his NBA career. In the previous game, Jennings became the first Piston since Isiah Thomas to have a 20/20 game, scoring 24 points and dishing out 21 assists in a win over Orlando.
Jennings made a rehab appearance with Detroit’s D League affiliate last weekend, putting up a double-double in 27 minutes. The Pistons had discussed having him play one more D League game on Wednesday, but decided to take him on the road trip instead.
At the moment, he’s tentatively scheduled to make his season debut on Dec. 29 when the Pistons play the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden.