Why Does Nerlens Noel Play So Little – Only For 20 Minutes?

Nerlens Noel is a talented center for the Detroit Pistons, yet he has been playing limited minutes for the team recently. This raises the question of why does Noel play so little – only for 20 minutes? The answer may lie in the fact that he has been experiencing soreness in his left knee, which has caused him to miss some games and be limited in others.

In this article we will explore the reasons why Noel has been playing so little and why it is important for the Pistons to manage his playing time carefully.

Why Does Nerlens Noel Play So Little - Only for 20 Minutes?
Source: thunderousintentions.com

Reasons for Playing So Little

Injury Concerns

The Pistons head coach Dwane Casey revealed after Sunday’s 117-104 loss to the Knicks that Noel was not available due to left knee soreness. This is a major concern for Noel and the team as knee injuries can be slow to heal and cause players to miss significant chunks of time.

Furthermore, knee injuries are particularly concerning for big men as they are often required to jump and move quickly and efficiently, something which can be hampered by a knee injury. As such, it is understandable why the Pistons would be hesitant to play Noel, as any further aggravation of the injury could lead to a longer-term absence.

Performance Issues

In addition to injury concerns, it is possible that Noel’s lack of playing time is due to performance issues. The Pistons have been relatively successful this season and have a deep roster filled with talented players, so it is possible that Noel simply has not been good enough to earn consistent playing time. This could be due to a lack of conditioning and rust from missing the start of the season with an injury, or it could be due to a general lack of skill or effort.

Coaching Decisions

Finally, it is possible that Noel’s lack of playing time is due to coaching decisions. With the Pistons having so many talented players, it is possible that the coaching staff has decided to prioritize other players over Noel, forcing him to take a back seat.

This could be due to a variety of factors, including the fact that Noel is new to the team and has yet to develop chemistry with his teammates, or it could be due to the fact that the team already has a core group of players that the coaches want to prioritize.

No matter the reasons, it is clear that Noel has not been given enough playing time this season, and this could be due to a combination of injury concerns, performance issues, and coaching decisions. The Pistons will need to closely monitor Noel’s health and performance if they want him to make a positive contribution this season, as his absence could be detrimental to the team’s success.

Risks of Playing Too Much

Risk of Injury

One of the major risks of playing too much basketball is the increased risk of injury. Playing the same sport for an extended period of time puts stress on the body and can lead to injuries such as pulled muscles, strains, and ligament tears. This is especially true for basketball, where players are constantly jumping and running, which puts a lot of strain on the lower body. If a player has not taken the proper rest and recovery time between games, they can be at an increased risk of suffering an injury.

Reduced Performance

Another risk of playing too much basketball is a reduced performance. If a player has been playing too much, they can become fatigued, which will cause their performance to suffer. Fatigue can also lead to poor decision making, as the player will not be able to think clearly. This can lead to them making poor decisions on the court that could cost their team the game.

Poor Coaching Decisions

Finally, playing too much basketball can lead to poor coaching decisions. Coaches may be tempted to keep their best players on the court for extended periods of time, which can lead to the players becoming fatigued. This can lead to the players performing poorly and can have a negative impact on the team’s performance.

Additionally, coaches may be tempted to play their best players in games where they are not needed or when the team is already ahead. This can be a mistake, as it can lead to the players becoming fatigued or injured.

Playing too much basketball can lead to an increased risk of injury, reduced performance, and poor coaching decisions. It is important for coaches and players to be aware of these risks and take the necessary steps to reduce them.

This could include taking regular breaks and ensuring that players get the proper amount of rest and recovery time between games. Additionally, coaches should be aware of their players’ fatigue levels and adjust their playing time accordingly.

Treatment Options

Treatment Options for Sore Knee

When it comes to treating sore knee, there are three main options: rest and rehabilitation, surgery, and medication. Each option is tailored to the individual, and it’s important to discuss the pros and cons with your physician to determine the best course of action.

Rest and Rehabilitation

For mild to moderate cases of sore knee, rest and rehabilitation are often the first line of treatment. This approach focuses on allowing the knee to recover with some physical therapy and exercises to strengthen the muscles around the knee. Resting the knee can reduce swelling and pain and can help the healing process. Physical therapy can help to restore range of motion and strength in the knee, and exercises can help to improve stability and flexibility.


In more severe cases, surgery may be recommended. Surgery can help to repair tears in the ligaments or cartilage and can help to reduce pain and improve mobility. It’s important to discuss the risks and benefits of surgery with your doctor before deciding if it’s the right option for you.


Medication can be used to help manage pain and reduce inflammation. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen and naproxen, are commonly used to reduce swelling and pain. Corticosteroid injections may also be used to reduce inflammation and pain. It’s important to discuss the risks and benefits of medications with your doctor before taking any.

When dealing with sore knee, it’s important to take the time to discuss all of your treatment options with your doctor. Depending on the severity of your case, different treatments may be more effective than others. It’s important to be proactive in your treatment and to follow your doctor’s instructions in order to get the best outcome.

Long-Term Impact

Effects on Career

The short-term impact of Pistons head coach Dwane Casey’s announcement that center Nerlens Noel is out due to left knee soreness on Noel’s career is yet to be seen. In the long-term, however, the effect of this injury could be far-reaching. While the severity of the injury is still unknown, any extended absence from the court could have a major impact on Noel’s career.

For starters, it could cause him to miss out on valuable minutes in a season where he was slated to start for the Pistons and play a key role in their success. This could then affect his ability to produce and make a positive impact for the team. Additionally, it could lead to a drop in his value as a free agent when his contract expires in the summer of 2021, as teams may be less likely to invest in a player with an uncertain injury status.

Finally, depending on the severity and the length of his injury, it could affect his physical condition going forward. If Noel is forced to miss an extended period of time, he may have to alter his playing style in order to accommodate any lingering effects. This could then lead to him losing some of the explosiveness and athleticism that has made him such a valuable asset for the Pistons.

Effects on Team

The effects of Noel’s injury on the Pistons are just as significant. Without Noel, the Pistons will be without one of their most important defensive players and will now be forced to rely on other players to fill the void that he leaves. This could lead to a drop in production on the defensive end, as well as a decrease in team morale as players are forced to adjust to a new role.

Additionally, the Pistons will be without one of their most reliable players on the offensive end. Without Noel’s ability to finish at the rim, the Pistons will have to rely on other players to make up the difference. This could lead to the team struggling to score points in the paint, resulting in a drop in offensive efficiency.

Effects on Health

The effects of Noel’s injury on his health are also an important factor to consider. Depending on the severity of the injury, it could have a major impact on his ability to perform going forward. If it is a serious injury, it could force Noel to miss an extended period of time, leading to a loss of physical conditioning and potentially long-lasting effects.

Furthermore, if the injury is severe enough, it could force Noel to alter his playing style in order to accommodate any lingering effects. This could lead to a decrease in his explosiveness and athleticism, which could in turn affect his ability to produce at a high level. Additionally, it could lead to an increase in the risk of further injuries in the future, as his body is no longer able to withstand the rigors of the NBA game.

Overall, the effects of Noel’s injury on his career, team, and health are yet to be seen. However, it is clear that any extended absence from the court could have a major impact on all three aspects. It is now up to Noel and the Pistons medical staff to ensure that he is able to make a full recovery and return to form sooner rather than later.

To Recap

The limited playing time of Nerlens Noel can be attributed to his sore left knee. The Pistons need to make sure that they manage his minutes carefully in order to ensure that he is healthy and able to perform at his best.

While it is unfortunate that Noel has been limited in his playing time, it is important for the Pistons to ensure that he is in top condition for the remainder of the season. By managing Noel’s minutes carefully, the Pistons can ensure that he will be able to contribute to the team’s success in the future.

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