The No. 1 pick in the 2021 draft is expected to be ready for the start of training camp next season, said the person, who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because neither Cunningham nor the team announced the plans for surgery publicly.
ESPN first reported that Cunningham would be having the season-ending procedure. Cunningham was on the floor in Miami before a game last week doing some shooting, which prompted some speculation that he may be coming back.
Cunningham hasn’t played since Nov. 9 while dealing with the shin issue, which has been treated as a stress fracture.
“It’s up to the medical group and to Cade,” Pistons coach Dwane Casey said in late November. “Whatever is best for his health. I’m all for it. I’m 100% behind him.”
Cunningham was an All-Rookie team pick last season after averaging 17.4 points, 5.5 rebounds and 5.6 assists. He had improvement in all three of those categories this season, with averages of 19.9 points, 6.2 rebounds and 6.0 assists through 12 games.
Detroit is 7-22 so far this season, the worst record in the NBA, and is being outscored by 7.1 points per game — the second-worst rate in the league. The Pistons were 3-9 in Cunningham’s 12 games and have gone 4-13 since.
Detroit’s next game is Wednesday at Charlotte.
Reporting by the Associated Press.
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