Posted on: January 25, 2012 3:56 pm

Thornton to miss 1-2 weeks with hematoma

By Matt Moore

From the Sacramento Kings Wednesday: 
A diagnostic ultrasound test performed on guard Marcus Thronton today at the UC Davis Medical Center revealed a significant hematoma in his left thigh. He is expected to miss approximately one to two weeks of action.
Thornton has also missed the past four games with the injury. The injury is similar but not identical to a thigh bruise and is probably pretty painful. He's averaging 16 points and 4 rebounds per game for Sacramento, and losing him takes a big sting out of their offense just as they've started to play more coherently on offense. 

This does open up more room for Jimmer Fredette, though. Which is great since he's shooting 35 percent from the field with a 19 percent usage rate and averaging 3 assists per 36 minutes. Wait, that's not good at all. 

The Kings face Denver at home Wednesday night.  
Posted on: January 24, 2012 3:00 pm
Edited on: January 24, 2012 3:06 pm

Luol Deng has torn ligament in left hand

Luol  Deng will miss "a couple of weeks" with a torn ligament in his hand. (Getty Images)
By Matt Moore

The signs were ominous on Monday and on Tuesday word from the Bulls came out that it was as bad as feared. The Chicago Tribune reports the Bulls announced Tuesday that Deng has a torn ligament in his left hand. At this point, Deng is planning on not having surgery, resting the injury in the short-term, then trying to play through it. The Bulls announced that he is "week to week" and that he would be out a "couple weeks." If that sounds vague, that's because it is. There's no way to tell how the injury will heal without surgery. 

The Bulls will miss Deng most out of all their injured players (including MVP Derrick Rose and Taj Gibson who have both missed time in the past week). He's been an anchor for the team on both sides of the ball. He's one of the premier wing defenders in the league, and has been actually scoring at a ridiculously high clip especially from mid-range this season. 

Kobe Bryant suffered a similar injury, at least in description, and has managed to play through it. He has at times struggled with his shot but also rattled off a string of 40-point game, so it is something that can be treated before games to allow players to play through it. For the short term, however, Deng is out and the Bulls will have to rally. In his absence, Ronnie Brewer has stepped up and is shooting 45 percent from the field and 50 percent from 3-point range. The Bulls have rallied past all their other injuries, but you have to wonder if an long-term injury to Deng will slow them down, at least somewhat.  Their depth at point guard without Derrick Rose was considerably better than it is at the small forward spot behind Brewer and Deng.
Posted on: January 24, 2012 11:52 am
Edited on: January 24, 2012 11:53 am

Dwyane Wade out Tuesday vs. Cavaliers

Posted by Royce Young

Dwyane Wade will miss his fifth straight game of the season because of a sprained ankle, sitting out the Heat's game at home versus the Cavaliers Tuesday.

Wade sprained it during a Jan. 14 game against the Denver Nuggets. Without Wade this season, the Heat are 6-1.

Miami will likely just continue doing what it has done over the past four games, putting the ball in LeBron's hands more while using a committee of James Jones, Mike Miller, Norris Cole, Mario Chalmers and Shane Battier to fill Wade's time.

Wade, 30, is averaging 19.6 points, 5.4 assists, 4.3 rebounds, 2.0 steals and 1.7 blocks in 35.1 minutes per game this season.

Miami next game after tonight is Tuesday at Detroit, which I wouldn't expect Wade to play either. Maybe he could return Friday for a home game against New York.
Posted on: January 23, 2012 8:45 am
Edited on: January 23, 2012 9:46 pm

Deng out vs. Nets, surgery a possibility?

By Matt Moore

Update Monday 9:22 p.m.: Deng did not play Monday, as expected, and after consultations with doctors, the new does not sound good. The Bulls have yet to release a formal statement as to the extent of Deng's injury beyond the initial wrist sprain diagnosis, but Tom Thibodeau's words to reporters before Monday's game vs. New Jersey do not spark confidence for Bulls fans. From the AP: 
The news on Deng wasn't great, with coach Tom Thibodeau saying he was "still consulting some doctors" and remains day to day after being injured late in Saturday's game against Charlotte. Asked if Deng would need surgery, Thibodeau said, "I don't know. I don't think so, would be my guess."

Losing Deng for an extended period would be a big blow for a team that entered Monday's game with the league's best record. He tore a ligament in his right wrist near the end of his 2004-05 rookie season.
So the news went from "Deg wants to play" to "Deng is totally not playing" to "Deng is probably not going to have surgery, maybe." The Bulls can afford to lose Deng for a week, for two weeks. After that it gets dicey. He just does too much on the Bulls. We'll keep ou updated on his condition. 


There's a running joke with Bulls fans that Tom Thibodeau prays for overtime each game so he can have more minutes to play Luol Deng. Deng is fourth among all players in minutes per game, playing more than 38 minutes per contest, this despite the shortened schedule and the fact that the Bulls are usually up by double digits in the fourth quarter of most of their games. And Deng has upheld exceptionally well so far, but a wrist injury will likely keep him out Monday vs. the Nets in Chicago. 

From the Chicago Tribune:
Deng underwent an MRI on his sprained left wrist Sunday, results of which were not immediately available. He said late Saturday he didn't think the injury would sideline him for a lengthy period.

However, with a normal week featuring no back-to-back games in this compressed schedule, not to mention a Nets lineup that starts three guards, Deng could sit for the first time this season.
via Chicago Bulls: Derrick Rose vows to return Monday, while Luol Deng may miss game - chicagotribune.com.

Deng's not the only Bull with injury issues. Derrick Rose is battling turf toe most notably, but Taj Gibson is out with a sprained ankle and John Lucas III is also potentially sidelined. The Bulls pride themselves on their total commitment and depth, but at some point, you have to manage the injuries effectively to make sure the team is in the best shape for the long run and especially the playoffs. 

The Bulls will still probably thump the Nets, because, well, they're the Nets, and the Bulls have been rolling even without the MVP against better competition this week. Deng's loss is a bit bigger if he sits, however. He does so much on both sides of the ball for the Bulls, he's honestly nearly as valuable as Rose. But without a single wing threat on the Nets outside of outside shooter Anthony Morrow, this may be the best game to sit Deng, so he can get healthy. 

And go back to playing 40 minutes a game.
Category: NBA
Posted on: January 23, 2012 2:53 am
Edited on: January 24, 2012 5:49 am

Rose plays Monday, says injury long-term

By Matt Moore

Update Monday 9:11 p.m.: Derrick Rose did in fact suit up for the Bulls Monday night against the Nets and was his usual dominant self, scoring 14 points and four assists in the first half. Before the game, Rose told the AP that he thought the turf toe injury could bother him for the rest of the season. Not optimal for the Bulls who need Rose as close to full strength as possible. Expect Rose to pepper the season with absences and to shut it down as soon as the Bulls lock up whatever playoff seed they're comfortable with. 


Derrick Rose has missed several games this season due to a painful turf toe injury. There had been discussions of him missing further time, but it turns out the MVP is planning on making a return to the floor on Monday. 
As for Rose, he told teammates on Friday in Cleveland he planned to play and didn't. So the morning shootaround could determine if he can play on his sprained big left toe.
via Chicago Bulls: Derrick Rose vows to return Monday, while Luol Deng may miss game - chicagotribune.com.

Rose recently said the injury is more painful than a similar injury in his second season, and there continues to be discussion of whether it is turf toe or a sprained toe, or both that is bothering Rose. It's also strange that Rose plans to play if the toe isn't 100 percent. The Bulls have been fine without Rose, tearing off three straight wins without the reigning MVP since a Monday loss in Memphis. C.J. Watson and John Lucas III have filled in admirably. 

But Rose's determination tends to get ahead of his self-preservation. The Bulls should remain cautious with Rose to make sure he's in top condition for the playoffs. The injury may take longer than Rose has to heal, but extra time off won't hurt. Don't be surprised if Rose winds up taking off another day, but for right now, he's planning on giving it a go.

Meanwhile, Luol Deng is likely to miss the game in Chicago Monday with a sprained wrist, Taj Gibson is out with a sprained ankle, and John Lucas III is a game-time decision with a groin injury. In short, the Bulls are banged up. Tom Thibodeau has a deep bench but has been known to play starters long minutes. Perhaps with as well as his team has played when missing its players and with the injuries racking up, he'll be more receptive to easing up on players' minutes to help them get healthy while still contributing. An MRI for Deng was held over the weekend. Results weren't available, but the Chicago Tribune reported Deng said after that he didn't think he'd miss significant time.
Category: NBA
Posted on: January 20, 2012 2:12 pm
Edited on: January 20, 2012 6:09 pm

Bulls PG Derrick Rose out vs. Cavs

Derrick Rose is still battling a turf toe injury. (Getty Images)
By Matt Moore and Ben Golliver

Update: Chicago Bulls All-Star point guard Derrick Rose has been ruled out for Friday night's game against the Cleveland Cavaliers, according to the Plain-Dealer.

Original Post: Derrick Rose is once again a gametime decision Friday night vs. the Cleveland Cavaliers. Rose has been battling turf toe for weeks, and in an interview with the Chicago Tribune, revealed the extent of the injury and how uncertain he is for the short-term of when he'll be back. 
Rose, for the first time, admitted the injury is worse than the turf toe that bothered him during his second season, which didnt cause him to miss any games. He also said he cant bend the toe. And also for the first time, Rose said he has "a little regret" for averaging 40 minutes in back-to-back games against Boston and Toronto last weekend.

Rose originally suffered the injury on Jan. 10 in Minnesota when Anthony Tolliver drove his foot into the ground during a scramble for a loose ball. He sat the next night, then played the next two games before sitting for good.

"Knowing that right when it starts feeling good it can go right back to zero, I have to make the smart decision," Rose said. "I wasn't able to bend my toe in like three years. When this injury happened, I aggravated it and I played on it sooner. It was real bad.

"Injuries are going to happen. Thats why I always get treatment. This is worse than my second season. That season, I just played through it but it wasn't that bad. Not being able to bend my toe in three years and somebody just forced their weight on my toe, it definitely hurt it."
via Rose admits toe worse than 2nd season injury - chicagotribune.com.

How many of you winced just reading that? Yeah, me too. 

The fact that Rose is trying to play on it at all, that he has played on it, and well, speaks a lot to his dedication to his performance and the Bulls. But the Bulls have lofty goals this season, namely advancing to the Finals after falling one round short, and the only way they can do that is if Rose is in a position to give them what he can provide at full strength. 

Rose struggled in last year's playoffs due to wearin down. He sustained an ankle injury against Indiana in the first round, and those things just don't heal easily. He took such a pounding due to the load he was carrying that when he matched up against LeBron James, he had nothing left. The Bulls have to be very cautious. As long as they're winning, there's no reason to rush Rose back. Better to get him back at as high a percentage as they can and continue to rest him periodically than punish his body before the real season, the playoffs, begin. 

K.C. Johnson of the Tribune says he would be "shocked" if Rose plays Friday night vs. the Cavs.
Posted on: January 19, 2012 11:57 am
Edited on: January 19, 2012 1:20 pm

Wade out, James gametime decision vs. Lakers

LeBron James is a gametime decision with flu-like symptoms and Dwyane Wade is out vs. the Lakers Thursday (Getty Images)
By Matt Moore

LeBron James was sent home from Heat practice Thursday morning with flu-like symptoms and Dwyane Wade will not play vs. the Los Angeles Lakers Thursday night, via the AP: 
Heat coach Erik Spoelstra says guard Dwyane Wade's status remains day-to-day with a sprained right ankle. Wade will not play Thursday night.

It's the second straight game Wade has missed with the ankle problem and the fifth overall missed because of injuries so far this season. Wade sat out three games earlier this month with a sore left foot.

James has been battling flu-like symptoms for much of this week.
via James sent home from shootaround with illness, Wade day-to-day - NBA - CBSSports.com News, Rumors, Scores, Stats, Fantasy Advice.

James was suffering from the same ailment during Tuesday night's game against the San Antonio Spurs. James started off struggling in that game, missing several layups. Then the second half came and apparently someone got a fluids treatment, because James started dropping three-pointers like the bucket was a hula-hoop. He wound up scoring 33 points along with five rebounds and 10 assists, because he's a freak of nature like that.

But with him missing practice, you have to wonder if he'll be well enough to even make it to the court, and if so, how effective he'll be against the Lakers' quality wing defenders. With James not at full strength and Wade out, the Lakers have to be expected to win in Miami for a big road win, no matter the circumstances.

Expect for there to be one zillion references to "the flu game" of Michael Jordan, his Game 5 effort in the 1997 Finals, between now and tonight's game. Unfortunately, as nearly everyone is aware, LeBron James is not Michael Jordan, no one is Michael Jordan, this is not the Finals, and any effort at all on James' part will be hindered by the physical effects of his illness. 

Huge break for the Lakers.

Mike Brown said Thursday at practice that he has no doubt James will play. Via the AP: 

"When you talk about great players like him, those guys even though they're sick or a little injured or whatever, they find a way to perform at a high level," Lakers coach Mike Brown, one of James' former coaches with the Cleveland Cavaliers, said Thursday afternoon. "I don't think it's any different for LeBron."
And Chris Bosh summed up how most people will regard the Heat's situation against the Laker: 

"The show still goes on," Heat forward Chris Bosh said. "We're still going to expect to win."

Posted on: January 17, 2012 12:06 am

Heat giving nothing on Wade's timetable

Posted by Royce Young

It could be a day before you see Dwyane Wade in action again. It could be a week. It could be a month. Because at this point, we just don't know because the Heat aren't giving anyone any clues.

Wade sprained his ankle Friday against the Nuggets and called it the worst he's ever had while also dealing with a bruised foot and a calf strain. He's beat up and via the Sun Sentinel, there's no timetable on his return.
Despite sustaining what appeared to be a nasty sprained right ankle Friday against the Denver Nuggets, and despite Wade having yet to return to practice, coach Erik Spoelstra refused to put a timetable on his star guard's return.

Asked at Monday's practice if Wade has been ruled out of Tuesday's game against the San Antonio Spurs, Spoelstra said, "Every day, I'll reevaluate and we'll go from there. There is no timetable on his injury right now.

"We're not going to get into specifics and try to lay down a timetable. There is no timetable of when he'll be back."
It seems that Wade would at least be missing Tuesday's game, but the question is if he could sit out extended time. The Heat are good without him, but better with him. Miami needs him in May, not January, so it's obviously wise to take it a bit slow. Still, the Heat are still working on sorting out late-game chemistry and offense issues, so every game Wade sits is less time to work some of those things out.
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