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Syracuse Basketball: Malachi Richardson Back at Practice Following Hard Fall

The freshman is fully expected to play against Pitt on Wednesday.

Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

Syracuse Orange basketball usually tends to find itself in depth problem situations midway through most seasons. That's a discussion for another time but the point is that they can ill afford to lose any key players at this point if they want to hold court with the other ACC bigs.

Malachi Richardson put a scare into everyone over the weekend when he hit the floor hard following a foul and laid on his stomach for several seconds before slowly getting up. He stayed in the game briefly but then left for the locker room and remained there for the final seven minutes or so. Compounding concerns, he was unavailable to reporters following the game.

Monday, however, the lanky freshman was back on the practice court and seemed to be in fine shape. Coach Mike Hopkins doesn't seem to have any pressing concerns.

"He almost felt like he knocked the wind out of himself,'' Mike Hopkins, SU's head coach designate, said after Monday's practice. "He hit hard on his side. It was like, 'Boom,' and he had a bruise.''

"He's a little sore,'' Hopkins said. "The biggest thing is I just told him to get up as many shots as you can. Usually, the day after a game we go light anyway. He'll be ready to go.''

Richardson has started every game for the Orange this year and is averaging 12 PPG. Hopkins said Richardson is expected to be on the floor versus the Pittsburgh Panthers on Wednesday and SU will be glad to have him.