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When will Noah Syndergaard return to Mets? Latest news, injury updates after Tommy John setback

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When will Noah Syndergaard return to Mets? Latest news, injury updates after Tommy John setback

The Mets suffered yet another key injury on Wednesday night.

Noah Syndergaard left his Single-A rehab start with the St. Lucie Mets after experiencing soreness in his right elbow. The veteran pitcher had Tommy John surgery 14 months ago and was in the process of working his way back from the injury.

Now, Syndergaard will be on the shelf for the Mets, and the team will have to wait and see whether he can return to action this year.

So, when will Syndergaard return after his latest injury? Here are the updates on the team’s second-best pitcher behind Jacob deGrom as his timetable for return is pushed back a bit.

MORE: Cardinals’ Mike Shildt sounds off on baseball’s “dirty little secret”

When will Noah Syndergaard return from injury?

MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo reports that Syndergaard is being shut down for at least six weeks. At the earliest, he may be able to resume throwing in early-to-mid July, but it may be longer.

Either way, he won’t be returning to the Mets until at least August, as DiComo confirmed.

So, it seems like the Mets should plan on being without Syndergaard for at least another couple of months.

What is Noah Syndergaard’s injury?

There’s a multifaceted answer to this question. As DiComo reported, Syndergaard is currently dealing with right elbow inflammation, but it’s more complicated than that.

In March 2020, Syndergaard was diagnosed with a torn UCL in his throwing elbow. The righthander had surgery to repair the issue on March 26 of that year and was out for the entire 2020 season.

The inflammation that Syndergaard is dealing with is in the elbow on which he had surgery. That’s why the Mets are taking a cautious approach with him. However, there is no structural damage for Syndergaard at this point, so he still may have a chance to return this season.

Noah Syndergaard injury timeline

Syndergaard was first diagnosed with a torn UCL on March 24, 2020, and had surgery two days later. He has spent the past 14 months rehabbing the injury and was just starting to work his way back into game shape.

On Wednesday, May 26, 2021, Syndergaard exited his second rehab start in St. Lucie with a sore elbow. He pitched just one inning before being removed from the game.

After the Mets’ game against the Rockies, manager Luis Rojas wasn’t too worried about Syndergaard’s status

“It was more preventative than anything, taking him out after one inning because of the discomfort he had. It just didn’t feel right,” Rojas said, per Greg Joyce of the New York Post. “When that happens, especially in a rehab assignment that’s gone so by the book — everything’s gone on point — you expect there may be a speed bump on the road, when you’re on a rehab assignment like this.

“No one’s overly concerned, which is the good news I got. Let’s see what comes out of it.”

Unfortunately, it ended up being worse than expected, and that’s what led to Syndergaard being sidelined for at least six weeks starting on May 27.

As a result, Rojas’ tone changed dramatically.

“We pray that he can pitch for us this year,” Rojas said, per DiComo.

MORE: Streaker at Nationals game finds perfect place to hide on field

Noah Syndergaard injury updates

— May 28, 2021: Syndergaard tweeted an update but didn’t provide any details.  

— May 27, 2021: The Mets shut Syndergaard down for at least six weeks as a result of right elbow inflammation.

— May 26, 2021: After one inning of work, Syndergaard exits a Single-A rehab start while dealing with soreness in his surgically repaired right elbow.

— March 26, 2020: Syndergaard has successful surgery to repair his UCL injury. Recovery is expected to take 12-15 months.

— March 24, 2020: Syndergaard is diagnosed with a torn UCL and is ruled out for the 2020 MLB season.

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Chris Paul, NBA Twitter react to Deandre Ayton’s game-winning dunk in Suns vs. Clippers

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Chris Paul, NBA Twitter react to Deandre Ayton's game-winning dunk in Suns vs. Clippers

Deandre Ayton was the hero for the Suns in their Game 2 win over the Clippers.

With less than a second left on the clock, the Suns were down one point and had just 0.9 seconds to get a shot off. Jae Crowder inbounded the ball on the baseline under the Suns’ basket and found Ayton cutting to the hoop.

Ayton threw it down. The play took just 0.2 seconds off the clock and sealed the 104-103 win for the Suns.

Here’s a look at the amazing finish.

Ayton and Crowder deserve a bulk of the credit, but Devin Booker had an impact on the finish as well. His physical screen on Ivica Zubac — who is seven inches taller and 35 pounds heavier than Booker — gave Ayton just enough space to get open off the cut and throw down the dunk.

And Booker put his body on the line despite playing with a bloodied nose that required stitches after an inadvertent hit from Patrick Beverley earlier in the game.

The Suns’ finish thrilled Phoenix fans as well as the team’s star point guard Chris Paul, who missed his second straight game in the NBA’s health and safety protocols. He took time to celebrate the victory on Twitter and praised coach Monty Williams for his “big-time play call.”

Indeed, it was a nice play call, and Williams made sure Ayton was prepared to dunk immediately after catching the ball.

“DA — if he throws it, you gotta try to dunk it,” Williams said. “Okay?”

Ayton was ready and obliged. As a result of his make, NBA Twitter erupted and celebrated the exciting end to yet another tightly-contested playoff battle. 

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How Suns perfectly executed game-winning play — and why goaltending didn’t apply on Deandre Ayton’s dunk

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How Suns perfectly executed game-winning play — and why goaltending didn't apply on Deandre Ayton's dunk

Back in December 2017, the Suns and Grizzlies found themselves in a down-to-the-wire contest. Phoenix had the ball with just 0.6 seconds on the clock and the game tied at 97.

So what did then-Suns coach Jay Triano do? He unveiled a play that he had kept in his back pocket for years.

MORE: Chris Paul reacts to Deandre Ayton’s game-winning dunk

While standing on the sideline near the Grizzlies’ bench, Dragan Bender threw a pass toward Tyson Chandler that floated directly above the rim, giving Chandler the opportunity to slam it through the bottom of the net. Wait, you can do that?

“You cannot goaltend a ball that isn’t going to count,” Triano told reporters after the game.

More than three years later, Triano’s words were once again ringing throughout Phoenix Suns Arena. Coach Monty Williams drew up a similar play on Tuesday night, and his players executed it perfectly to give the Suns a stunning 104-103 win over the Clippers and a 2-0 series lead in the Western Conference finals.

Look at this beauty:

OK, let’s break down what NBA TV’s Matt Winer called “The Valley Oop.” (Great work, Matt).

First, notice the positioning of DeMarcus Cousins. Clippers coach Tyronn Lue made a smart move by putting Cousins on Jae Crowder in order to make an inbound pass more difficult, but Cousins is squared up to Crowder, opening up the passing lane Crowder needs.

As for the action in the paint, Devin Booker sets a terrific screen on Ivica Zubac, allowing Deandre Ayton to break free. Could Nicolas Batum have bumped Ayton and recovered? Possibly, but he is understandably concerned with leaving Booker.

(NBA)

Once Ayton gets a step on Zubac running toward the basket, it’s on Crowder to put the ball in a spot in which Ayton can score. As you can see from the angle below, Crowder just narrowly avoids the backboard. The placement here is simply incredible.

“That’s definitely Jae’s game-winner,” Ayton said after the game.

deandre ayton suns play
(NBA)

Now, you may still be asking, “But why isn’t that a goaltending violation?”

As the NBA explained in its Last Two Minute Report from that December 2017 game, “Goaltending rules do not apply because (Chandler) makes contact with the ball off of a throw-in and not a live ball that has already legally been touched on the playing court.” Scott Foster, who served as the crew chief on Tuesday, offered the same explanation when asked about Ayton’s dunk.

Sometimes less than a second can be all the time in the world. Just ask any Suns fan.

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Clippers’ Paul George misses crucial free throws in stunning Game 2 loss to Suns

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Clippers' Paul George misses crucial free throws in stunning Game 2 loss to Suns

The box score from Tuesday’s Suns-Clippers game — a pivotal Game 2 win for Phoenix in the Western Conference finals — will show Paul George had a decent game.

Twenty-six points, on 10-of-23 shooting; six assists; six rebounds; and 5-of-10 shooting from the free throw line. He also scored his team’s last six points, all within the last minute, to help the Clippers to a 103-102 lead with just 8.2 seconds remaining.

The only stats that ultimately mattered in the Clippers’ 104-103 loss, however, were the final two free throws George — a career 84.7-percent free throw shooter — missed. They ultimately allowed Phoenix a chance at an unbelievable comeback victory, which may prove costly even as the series heads back to LA.

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Had George sunk both of those shots, the Suns would have needed a 3-pointer just to send the game to overtime. Had he sunk even one shot, they would have needed a 2-pointer. But he missed both, allowing the Suns to win on an inbound dunk with less than a second remaining:

Credit to Deandre Ayton, Jae Crowder and the Suns. That play will go down as one of the top plays in NBA playoffs history. But every heartbreaking loss needs a goat, and no one fits the bill better than “Playoff P,” who could have secured a win for his team with the simplest of basketball scoring plays.

Here’s the bright side for the Clippers, if there is one: They have already overcome 2-0 deficits in each of their first two series against the Mavericks and Jazz, respectively. That’s likely a cold comfort as George and Co. head back to LA, however. The scathing Twitter comments aimed at George likely won’t do anything to help, either:

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