Kings' Harry Giles Returns to Practice, Inching Closer to Season Debut

SACRAMENTO -- Harry Giles is on the mend.

After missing all but the first day of training camp because of a sore left knee, the 21-year-old Kings center returned to the practice court Thursday and was at shoot-around Friday morning. Following the session, he spoke to the press for the first time since the team's Sept. 27 media day.

"I'm feeling good. Just making progress, just getting ready to play," Giles told media members.

There is no official word on the injury outside of knee soreness, but it cost the third-year big an opportunity to compete for a rotational spot to open the Kings' season.

"It just happens," Giles said. "I work hard. When you work hard, your knee might flare up sometimes. It's not like I got hurt or anything."

With a new coaching staff, new terminology and new schemes in Sacramento, Giles has tried to stay in the loop.

"I've been around, I've been learning the plays and stuff like that, still staying in shape," Giles said. "I think me just being in it, being around it, trying to throw myself in it as much as I can, regardless of whether I'm playing or not is keeping me in it. This is not my first time being hurt, either."

Giles has a long history of knee problems dating to his high school days. He has torn his ACL in both knees, and required a clean-up on his left knee during his time at Duke.

The Kings have erred on the side of caution with Giles, even going as far as redshirting him for one year after selecting him with the No. 20 pick in the 2017 NBA Draft.

In addition, he missed the final 11 games of the 2018-19 season with a left thigh bruise, and the team held him out of summer league action in July to look at other players.

Following an opening night injury to Marvin Bagley, the Kings could use a healthy and energized Giles back in the fray. Bagley is expected to miss four to six weeks with a broken thumb, although the injury is not expected to require surgery.

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Giles suited up for 58 games for the Kings last season, averaging 7.0 points, 3.8 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 14.1 minutes per game. He plays with a chip on his shoulder and is an exceptional passer for a 6-foot-10 big man.

As of Friday, there was no timetable for Giles' return, but the fact that he is participating on the floor in team practices is encouraging, and Kings coach Luke Walton did not rule out the possibility of him suiting up next week.

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