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July 30, 2012Monday afternoon marked Boilermaker junior Terone Johnson's first full practice in advance of Purdue's trip to Italy.
The junior spent nearly the past month slowed by a stress fracture in his hand, an injury that did not require surgery, just rest.
"I felt like I fit in pretty well," said Johnson, Purdue's top returning scorer from last season. "I only sat out a couple weeks but it was good to get and physically be able to play with these guys."
For it being his first practice - it was Purdue's fifth of its preparation to travel overseas beginning Aug. 7 - Johnson impressed during the roughly three-hour practice.
"It was good getting back in today," Johnson said. "We made a lot of progress today, getting these guys battling more. We have to start playing harder and harder each time we step on the court."
Johnson is faster and quicker now, having shed roughly 10 pounds from last season, but said Monday he battled some mild rust after more than three weeks of being held out of full participation. Prior to Monday, he'd been taking part only in certain portions of practices, but nothing full-contact.
"I'll get it back together this week," Johnson said.
Purdue practices three more times this week before holding its open scrimmage Saturday afternoon in Mackey Arena, in conjunction with the program's alumni game.
While Purdue gained a player back Monday, it lost another, as forward Donnie Hale missed practice due to illness.