Bright Dike has been cleared to return and is once again training with the Portland Timbers. Dike, working in non-contact drills, trained with the team for the first time since tearing his ACL in a preseason game against the Seattle Sounders on February 5th.
“It’s been a long time. I’ve been waiting for this,” said Dike. “I’ve been waiting to get into practice, so it makes me really happy.”
Dike will be wearing a knee brace for the foreseeable future, but it shouldn’t be a major hinderance on the pitch. He also added that rehab is going smoothly and the training will help improve his quickness.
“I think a lot of the things I’m doing right now will actually be better for me,” Dike said. “Not just the knee strength, but just mobility-wise.”
Dike scored five goals while appearing in 12 games during the 2012 season. He was a supposed to be a competitor for one of the starting forward jobs this season with Ryan Johnson. His return will be a big spark to the second-half of the season, should he stay healthy.
“It will take him some time to get his legs underneath him, and to get sharp and in tune to the team and the tactics. And also just technically getting up to speed,” Porter said.
“We’re not going to not use him if he’s ready and if he’s good enough,” Porter said.