Utah Jazz notebook: Baseball team and sprained ankle have improved for C.J. Miles, Texas Ranger (fan)
SALT LAKE CITY — Getting injured in Friday night's game had one perk for C.J. Miles.
The Utah Jazz swingman and Dallas native got to watch his hometown Texas Rangers earn their first-ever trip to the World Series while being treated for a sprained right ankle in the training room during the second half.
(Don't worry. He tuned into the Jazz's preseason-ending 82-71 victory on the other TV in the room. And, no, he didn't stay in the training room just to watch the Rangers finish off the Yankees in the ALCS.)
"I'm excited," Miles said. "I wish I could be able to go to one of those games."
Unfortunately for Miles, he won't be able to watch Games 1 or 2 of the Rangers-Giants World Series live. The Jazz play both Wednesday (at Denver) and Thursday (home vs. Phoenix).
The good news for Miles is that he seems to be back on track health-wise to be on the court for those NBA games, and not in the training room.
After sitting out the second half Friday following his injury, Miles had his ankle treated by the team's medical staff on the Jazz's off day Saturday. On Sunday, he was able to participate in a full practice.
"I'm all right — a little sore," Miles said prior to practice. "But definitely five times better than I was walking out of the locker room the other day."
At least he walked out as a fan of the American League pennant winner.
And for those wondering if Miles just jumped on the Rangers' bandwagon, the vocal Dallas Cowboys' fan claims he's also been a lifelong Texas baseball supporter. He fondly recalls getting tickets to watch MLB action as a reward in school.
"I played baseball when I was young and Rangers was all I know," Miles said. "They weren't good when I was growing up. It was like total opposite of the Cowboys in the glory days."
Of course, the exact opposite is the case this year. (Just don't remind him about his boys' 1-4 start – unless, say, you're a fan of the Steelers, like Deron Williams.)
But Miles would rather talk about his winning team – the Rangers.
"It's great to see them do well. I've stuck with them," Miles said. "I didn't have anything to yell about, so it might look like I'm jumping on the bandwagon, but I have something to talk about now."
Further proof that Miles isn't a front-runner: He has Texas gear that is not brand new.
"I've got Rangers hats in every color you can name," Miles said. "I had them for the last couple of years now."
If Miles worked it right, it's possible he could attend one of the games at Rangers Stadium. The Jazz arrive in Oklahoma City on Saturday for their Sunday showdown with the Thunder, meaning the World Series will only be 200 miles away that night. Game 4 is also in Texas on Monday – another off-night for Utah.
BACK AT IT:Deron Williams rejoined the Jazz on Sunday after missing Friday's game for personal reasons. He was happy his teammates finished off an 8-0 preseason, but is taking the early success in stride.
"A lot of teams have good records that aren't going to have good records in the regular season," he said.
Williams didn't take some tongue-in-cheek bait when jokingly asked if that meant he would not be predicting a Western Conference Finals featuring Memphis and Utah, the NBA's only teams to go unbeaten in eight exhibition contests. Orlando went 7-0.
"We played well in stretches," Williams added. "We did some things really well. We have some things we still need to work on, but we're definitely happy with where we are. I think we're coming along."
INJURY FRONT: Al Jefferson (bruised knuckle) and Raja Bell (shoulder bursitis) also practiced Sunday, while Mehmet Okur (Achilles heel) again had limited participation. Though Miles, Jefferson and Bell are expected to play Wednesday, the Jazz remain uncertain when Okur will return from rehabbing his surgically repaired ruptured tendon.
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