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Report: Victor Oladipo plans to make season debut Jan. 29 vs. Bulls

Pacers G has been sidelined with torn quad, expected to be back at end of month.

Indiana Pacers guard Victor Oladipo watches the game from the sideline in the first half against the Orlando Magic at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Indiana Pacers G Victor Oladipo says he plans to make his season debut on Jan. 29 vs. the Chicago Bulls, the guard told The Athletic’s Shams Charania in an interview for Stadium.

Oladipo has been sidelined all season after tearing his quad, which needed surgery. It’s been a long wait but it appears Dipo is ready to return at the end of the month for the Pacers, who are still in good position in the Eastern Conference playoff race. Still, Indiana has had health issues in the backcourt with Malcolm Brogdon and Jeremy Lamb, so Oladipo’s return would shore up the position for the stretch run.

Fantasy Basketball Analysis: Indiana Pacers SG Victor Oladipo

I’d imagine when Dipo comes back, he’ll likely be on a minutes restriction and won’t play on back-to-back sets. That seems normal in today’s NBA and Oladipo is too valuable to the Pacers for them to rush him into action. So until he gets up to 100%, I’d say it’s tough to trust him unless we see otherwise in game play.

I don’t think it’s a downgrade for Brogdon when he’s healthy, if anything it helps take pressure off him — especially with all the injuries he’s dealing with. Aaron Holiday should drop down on the depth chart as a result and T.J. McConnell takes a value hit as well. But again, Oladipo likely won’t be full-speed until at least mid-February.