THE Bogey Man is back.
Australian centre Andrew Bogut made his long-awaited return to the court with his NBA side Golden State Warriors in their 114-102 win over Toronto Raptors in Toronto today.
Bogut scored 12 points, grabbed seven rebounds and had four blocks in 23 minutes on court. He had previously missed 39 games with an ankle injury after playing the first four matches of the season.
Most impressively for Warriors fans, Bogut quickly meshed with all-star power forward David Lee (21 points, 12 rebounds, seven assists) with the pair combining for nine assists including a flashy Lee pass which ended in a Bogut dunk.
Speaking post-game to the CSN Bay Area television team, Bogut looked elated to have got through his return match.
"It's been hell for me for the past two months," he said. "It felt great to get out there and before the game I thanked the coaches for being patient; it's been a frustrating time for me and for my supporters, this [missing games] was the last thing I wanted but now it feels like I'm almost there."
Despite looking comfortable and moving confidently up and down the court, Bogut said he was unlikely to play any back-to-back nights for a few weeks as he lets his body adjust to being back on court.
The Warriors face Cleveland tomorrow but Bogut is unlikely to play.
"We will see what happens, I'll speak with the trainers but I think back-to-backs are out of the question until after the all-star break [next month]," he said.
Overall Bogut said he was most pleased to lead his side to a win.
"It would have been useless to come back if we lost," he said. "[Getting back on court] beats running on the treadmill, I'll tell you that much. This is what I love to do and what I'm paid to do."