After an encouraging rookie season with the Los Angeles Lakers, Josh Hart went right back to work in preparation for a second go-around in Las Vegas Summer League. Hart also planned to participate in the inaugural California Classic Summer League.
While the Lakers initially intended to limit the number of games he played in, Hart, with an assist from head coach Luke Walton, convinced the organization to remove any restrictions. Hart was named Las Vegas Summer League MVP.
Months later, Hart surmised his loaded scheduled contributed to knee trouble that derailed his season. “It was frustrating from the end of December to January, just with the inability to really explode off of it,” Hart said during his Lakers exit interview.
“I think that was the biggest thing. Now, I just have to focus on getting better and rehabbing.”
Hart spent months attempting to push through discomfort in his right knee, which was initially diagnosed as tendinitis. He later intimated the injury was more complex and one that would likely require a decision come the end of the regular season.
On March 28, he underwent an ultrasonic debridement procedure on his right knee patellar tendon.
“I’m confident the procedure will work,” Hart said. “I guess it’s a double-edge sword. Luckily for myself, I can start the rehab and that whole process now.
“If that doesn’t (work), in a month or two you can kind of figure something else out, so you have a lot of time this offseason to get my knee right.”
Whereas Hart spent the entirety of last offseason in the weight room and on the court, this summer will bring about a different set circumstances. “It will definitely be different. It will be more frustrating,” Hart said of the offseason.
“Not really being able to get onto the court for a month and a half to two months, that’s a frustrating aspect. Right now rehab is slow. It’s boring and it’s frustrating for me, but I’m going to continue with the process and keep working on getting stronger mentally and physically.”