His right knee still aching, Timberwolves guard Brandon Roy spent the past few days contemplating his future, and whether the NBA would be a part of it. Ultimately, Roy -- after consulting with yet another doctor -- has decided upon a new treatment on his right knee that he hopes will allow him to return to action.
Neither Roy nor the Wolves will know whether the new treatment will work for at least three or four weeks, team President of Basketball Operations David Kahn said before Saturday's game with Phoenix.
"Last week while practicing, I suffered a setback in my recovery," Roy said in a statement released by the team. "I've felt better since the recent surgery, but I am not all the way better. The past two days I have been weighing all of my options as I try to continue my basketball career. I have decided to explore additional treatment options and an extensive rehabilitation plan. My goal has been, and continues to be, to return to the basketball."
But, according to Kahn, Roy considered all options in recent days, including leaving the game for the second time in three seasons. The Target Center media room was set up Saturday morning for a news conference, one that was never held.
Chronic knee problems forced Roy, a three-time All-Star while in Portland, to retire following the 2010-11 season. But, after undergoing platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy, Roy felt good enough to attempt a comeback, signing a two-year, $10 million deal with the Wolves last summer.
Kahn said Roy felt very good during training camp, and in the preseason until he knocked knees during a preseason game. From then on Roy has been struggling. He played in the team's first five regular-season games, but in significant pain. He ultimately opted for an arthroscopic procedure.
"It did help," Kahn said of the procedure. "The pain is better than it was. But it still isn't low enough to match where he was in the preseason. That's all he's trying to do, to match up with how he felt in the preseason, to feel that he can be there for us every game."
Kahn didn't specify what the new treatment would be, but he did say it wasn't another surgery or procedure. The impact of the latest news won't have a huge impact on the court, where rookie Alexey Shved has benefited from the minutes that might have gone to Roy.
"I think it's tougher on Brandon, not being able to play, trying to come back," Wolves coach Rick Adelman said. "He worked really hard to try to come back, and he had that setback, and now he's struggling again. It's really up to him as to how much he can do and how much he can come back. But, like I said, we have to move on [while he's out]."
After a workout Thursday Roy said he felt good and that, given another good workout Friday, he might lobby to play as early as Saturday's game. But Adelman said he never considered that a possibility.
"He was practicing last week where he said he first felt it," Kahn said. "He was feeling better, and then he started feeling less better."
Only time will tell whether the new treatment option will get Roy back to the way he felt in training camp.
"I can tell he's an optimistic person," Kahn said. "He understands we have to do what's best for the team. He acknowledges that, and he actually was encouraging of that."
Should the treatment not work and Roy ultimately has to retire from the game again, the Wolves would be on the hook for his $5 million salary this year, but the second season is not guaranteed.