The Wolverine

April 2021

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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APRIL 2021 THE WOLVERINE 63 BY AUSTIN FOX G uard Caris LeVert was traded from the Brooklyn Nets to the Indiana Pacers Jan. 16, a move he later credited as potentially having saved his life. The physical LeVert took to complete the trade to Indiana revealed renal cell carcinoma, a form of kidney cancer. Following surgery and just under two months of rehab, LeVert made his return to the hardwood March 13, helping lead his new squad to a 122‑111 win over the Phoenix Suns. The 26‑year‑old started the game and played 27 minutes, tallying 13 points and seven rebounds while hitting 5 of 14 shots. "A month and a half to two months ago, I didn't even know if I was going to be out here, especially this soon af‑ ter everything that had happened," LeVert said after the victory. "There's definitely a level of gratefulness. I'm just happy to be on the court." The contest marked the first time LeVert had played in a game since Brooklyn's win over Denver Jan. 12. Furthermore, the Columbus, Ohio, native revealed the victory over Phoenix was just the second time he had played basketball in a five‑on‑ five setting since the mass on his kid‑ ney was discovered in mid‑January. "You can see he's dynamic with the basketball," Pacers head coach Nate Bjorkgren noted after the game. "That was just the beginning. He hadn't played in a long time but did a lot of nice things. "I thought Caris looked great out there. When he entered the locker room [after doing a postgame TV interview], the guys all clapped for him. His character level is so high, and our team was very, very happy to have him back." FORMER WOLVERINES ON NBA ROSTERS Through March 14 • Ignas Brazdeikis (Played at U-M from 2018-19), F, New York Knicks: Averaged 0.5 points, 0.5 rebounds and just 1.8 minutes of action in four games for the 20-19 Knicks … Spent the ma- jority of his time with the Westchester Knicks of the G-League. • Trey Burke (2011-13), G, Dallas Mavericks: Tallied 7.3 points, 1.6 as- sists and 16.0 minutes per game while shooting 38.4 percent from three-point range in 36 contests (no starts) for the 20-17 Mavericks. • Tim Hardaway Jr. (2010-13), G/F, Dallas Mavericks: Started 17 of Dallas' 36 games, and averaged 16.2 points and 3.2 rebounds in 29.3 minutes per outing … His scoring total was third- best on the team. • Caris LeVert (2012-16), G, Indi- ana Pacers: Averaged 18.5 points, 6.0 assists and 4.3 rebounds in 12 show- downs (four starts) for the 26-13 Brook- MICHIGAN IN THE PROS Caris LeVert Makes Triumphant Return From Cancer Surgery LeVert posted 13 points and seven rebounds for the Indiana Pacers on March 13 in his first game action since being treated for renal cell carcinoma, a form of kidney cancer. PHOTO BY NATHANIEL S. BUTLER/COURTESY BROOKLYN NETS

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