April 4, 2015 / 8:03 PM / 4 years ago

George returning for Pacers, eight months after breaking leg

Aug 1, 2014; Las Vegas, NV, USA; USA Team Blue guard Paul George lays on the floor after injuring his leg during the USA Basketball Showcase at Thomas & Mack Center. Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

(Reuters) - Two-time NBA All-Star Paul George will make his season’s debut for the Indiana Pacers on Sunday, eight months after breaking his leg in a horrifying incident.

George announced on Twitter that he would be available for the game against the Miami Heat, a crucial contest for both teams who are part of a five-team battle for the final two playoff berths in the Eastern Conference.

He had initially expected to miss the entire season.

George’s lower right leg snapped like a twig when he collided with a backboard stanchion during a scrimmage game with the U.S. national team last August.

“The recovery has been a long process and this is another step in the process,” George said on the Pacers’ website.

“I’m excited, but at the same time I’m aware I’m still in a rehab stage and will continue to work to get back to full strength.”

Indiana basketball operations president Larry Bird said George will initially play limited minutes.

“He has worked hard to get to this point and still has work to do, but it’s a positive step toward what we hope will be a full recovery at some point,” Bird said.

Reporting by Andrew Both in Cary, North Carolina, editing by Gene Cherry

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