There has been an acceptance among all parties that Suns point guard Eric Bledsoe will return this season, perhaps after the All-Star break.

But just as the Suns have taken a careful approach with his rehabilitation, Bledsoe is being cautious with projections for his return from a Jan. 10 surgery to remove a piece of torn meniscus.

Bledsoe spoke Wednesday for the first time since his surgery and was asked about returning this season.

“If it’s possible,” Bledsoe said. “I’m taking it slow.”

Bledsoe said he is in “the basics” of rehabilitation. Coach Jeff Hornacek said Bledsoe will start joining the team on the bench for games and will go on next week’s four-game trip.

“Now he’s feeling better with his leg to get around and things don’t get stiff when he’s sitting there,” Hornacek said. “We told him we’d like you there as much as possible. Actually, during the games, when the point guards come off, you can sit with them and talk to him and tell them some of the things you see.”

Bledsoe said he is “taking it as slow as possible” and twice mentioned wanting to be 100 percent.

The Suns are 16-8 with Bledsoe this season and 7-9 without him. He called the surgery news “devastating.”

“Everybody was feeling great and still is feeling great,” Bledsoe said. “To go down like this and watching them go out every night and battle is kind of tough.”