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Porter Jr. nailed a three to cut the deficit to one before Georgia stretched it to two, but Robertson's final shot did not fall.

National Basketball Association draft lottery-bound Michael Porter is back just in time for Missouri to make a March Madness push, though the team fell, 62-60, to Georgia in the SEC Tournament.

But in late February he was cleared by doctors to resume all basketball activities.

Anyway, it was nearly poetic, how quickly and perfectly it all went down, and nearly overnight Missouri shape-shifted from a program that finished 8-24 in 2016-17 to a team that legitimately had a chance to reach its first Final Four a year later. "For me it was always Mike's decision to play or not play".

Still, those 17 shots were partly a product of foul trouble that forced Porter to play more minutes than Martin envisioned. "I want to leave a legacy". "We put them in the bonus really early, and they made a lot of money at the free-throw line".

Then last November, in front of the first sellout crowd at Mizzou Arena in four years, Porter played less than two minutes before hurting his back.

Martin alerted the media of Porter's return Tuesday, with the news eventually broken via SEC Network's Paul Finebaum.

His collegiate career is likely not over just yet, as the Tigers eye an at-large NCAA Tournament bid.

Porter averaged 36.2 points and 13.6 rebounds per game as a senior in high school in Washington, and he was a McDonald's All-American after signing with Missouri. The return of Porter, if he's healthy, could make Missouri a risky squad that's far better than its seed. It was a coming-of-age outing against Vanderbilt, one that carried over to last Saturday's 19-point effort against Arkansas.

The SEC Tournament will be carried on SEC Network and ESPN, with the quarterfinals, semifinals and championship game on the main network. He took seven more shots than the second-most prolific shooter on his team. "We missed some easy tip-ins and some layups and some open threes". He checked in with 17:22 to go in the first half. "Maybe a 37-inch vertical instead of 40".

If Missouri gets this far, the breadth of potential opponents is too great and the odds of each matchup too low, so we won't bother you with any speculation. With Puryear and Tilmon on the bench most of the first half and Missouri getting little-to-production from leading scorers Jordan Barnett and Kassius Robertson, the Tigers' offense that was built on ball movement shifted to standing around and waiting for one of the Porter brothers to make something happen.

TURNING POINT: Missouri tied the game at 39 with 14:11 to go on Robertson's lone 3-pointer of the afternoon. "I don't know how many minutes he'll play; we'll play it just like he's a part of the team". So we've got some things we've got to fix, but it's small things. So should they be granted a higher seed with a preseason all-American in the lineup and now with one game, disappointing as it was, behind him? "And I'd be surprised if he plays 30 minutes of the game". The Missouri player is set to re-debut ahead of March Madness, so get the lowdown on this star recruit.