Michigan's Tim Hardaway Jr. still questionable for Thursday's Big Ten opener at Northwestern
ANN ARBOR -- Michigan still doesn't know if it'll have its second-leading scorer on the court Thursday when Big Ten play begins.
Wolverines coach John Beilein said Wednesday that the status of injured junior guard Tim Hardaway Jr. is still up in the air for Thursday's conference opener at Northwestern (7 p.m., ESPN2).
Hardaway missed the first game of his career Saturday against Central Michigan with an ankle injury -- snapping a streak of 81 straight starts.
"He did a few things (in practice Tuesday) and he's going to do a few more things (Thursday) and we'll figure out what he can do," Beilein said. "We really won't know more until he stretches himself a little bit more in practice."
After Saturday's win over CMU, Beilein said he wanted to get Hardaway as much rest as possible prior to Thursday. The 6-foot-6 junior has not gone through full practice sessions with the team early this week, instead focusing on individual drills to strengthen his ankle.
Beilein maintained that Hardaway would have missed the CMU game even if it was a Big Ten tilt, because his injury is one that needs to be taken care of now so it doesn't linger for the remainder of the year.
"It's tough to tell sometimes, one thing we do know is that it's one of those things that needs just enough rest to be healthy the rest of the year," he said. "Or else it'd be lingering.
"We'll know more (Thursday)."
Michigan started freshman Caris LeVert in Hardaway's place against the Chippewas, and LeVert responded with 9 points and 5 assists in 32 minutes.
Those are admirable numbers, but far from the impact Hardaway has given Michigan this season at 15.8 points and 5.3 rebounds per game.
In other injury news, Beilein said injured sophomore forward Jon Horford is still "progressing" from a dislocated kneecap injury.
But he has not returned to practice with the team just yet, and isn't expected to be available for the start of league play.
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