ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) - Orlando Magic players say Jameer Nelson will play in the NBA finals, even though the All-Star point guard and his coach remain publicly pessimistic.
Nelson participated in a full team practice Tuesday for the first time since tearing the labrum in his right shoulder Feb. 2. While Nelson and coach Stan Van Gundy still said it won't be determined until game day, players said Nelson looked "terrific" and expect the point guard to be on the court against the Los Angeles Lakers.
Backup point guard Anthony Johnson said, "I expect to see him out there at some point in the series."
Nelson had what was then called season-ending surgery Feb. 19. Nelson's rehabilitation was supposed to take at least another two months. Game 1 of the finals is Thursday night in Los Angeles.
Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.