For the first time in 2½ years, Orlando Magic big man Jonathan Isaac played a basketball game.
Isaac played for the organization’s G League affiliate, the Lakeland Magic, Wednesday vs. the Westchester Knicks at RP Funding Center in his first game since Aug. 2, 2020 — when he tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee.
Despite the lengthy time away from play, he looked fluid and comfortable on both ends in his first game action in 892 days.
Isaac had 13 points (5-of-7 shooting), 3 rebounds and 1 assist in 8:24 first-half minutes. He was on a playing time restriction, with Lakeland’s broadcast saying he was expected to play around 15 minutes.
Isaac looked good with his shotmaking along with the speed he played with, his ability to get to his spots and his physicality.
It wasn’t known as of Wednesday whether Isaac would play in any other Lakeland games while the Orlando Magic are on their five-game road trip, which ends Sunday in Denver. The Magic are 2-1 on the trip after winning 109-106 on Tuesday in Portland.
There’s a good chance he does — depending on how he physically responds to being in game action again. Lakeland hosts the Greensboro Swarm on Friday and Saturday.
Isaac missed the 2020-21 and 2021-22 seasons and half of this season since tearing the ACL — more than 29 months since his last game action before Wednesday.
When factoring in the time he was sidelined before the ACL injury, Isaac hasn’t consistently played basketball in almost three full years. He had just recovered from a major left knee injury in January 2020 before tearing a ligament during the league’s restart in its Disney World bubble.
When Isaac plays for Orlando again has yet to be determined. But playing for Lakeland is an encouraging sign that he’ll be suiting up for Orlando in the near future.
This article first appeared on OrlandoSentinel.com. Email Khobi Price at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter at @khobi_price.