First, the good news: Carl English will be back in the St. John’s Edge lineup Saturday night for the first time in two months.
Now, the bad news: the Edge will be without starting guard Junior Cadougan for the remainder of their season, however long it lasts.
English was activated from injured reserve Thursday after sitting on the sidelines for two months following surgery in February to repair ligaments in his left thumb.
He joins the Edge Saturday night when St. John’s opens its best-of-seven Central Division final against the KW Titans at Mile One Centre.
However, the team announced Friday Cadoughan suffered a leg injury last Sunday in the Edge’s series-clinching win over the Sudbury Five. Officially, the Toronto native sustained an adductor Longus Rupture in his left groin/pelvic area.
The timetable for a return has been set at four to six months, meaning the National Basketball League of Canada’s most improved player is done for the rest of the season.
So, in a sense, English’s return is good timing. He has been working out and shooting for some time, having last played Feb. 7, and this week has participated in full practice.
It’s been a challenging season for the reigning National Basketball League of Canada MVP, who battled leg injuries earlier in the year.
In total, he’s appeared in 13 games, averaging 14.5 points.
The Edge advanced to the second round of the playoffs after needing five games to dispose of the Sudbury Five in the opening round. The Kitchener, Ont.-based Titans also needed five games to beat their first-round opponent, the two-time defending champs London Lightning.
St. John’s was 21-19 during the regular season, while the Titans were 19-21.
The Titans won two of the three meetings against the Edge this season, splitting a March 12-13 series at Mile One. The Titans won the first game 123-109, and the Edge took the rubber match 101-97. Back on Feb. 23 in Kitchener, the home team escaped with a 117-105 victory.
St. John’s reached the Central Division final last year as well before bowing out in six games to the Lightning, who went on to win a second straight league championship.
One player on that London team was Canadian Kyle Johnson. Johnson is now an Edge player, and will make his St. John’s debut tonight. The 30-year-old from Scarborough, Ont., was added to the roster as the injury designate for Shaquille Keith, who suffered a broken foot during the Edge’s first-round series.
During the 2016-17 campaign, Johnson set a Lightning record with 51 points in a game against Moncton.
Game 2 of the series goes 7 p.m. Monday at Mile One, before shifting to Kitchener for Games 3, 4 and 5 April 26, 28 and 30.
If Games 6 and 7 are needed, they will be played in St. John’s.