New York Knicks forward Obi Toppin will be sidelined for 2-3 weeks with a non-displaced fracture in his right fibula head, the team announced on Thursday. Toppin hurt his knee in the second quarter of the Knicks' game against the Atlanta Hawks at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday.
He appears to have suffered the fracture about a minute-and-a-half into the second quarter:
Toppin continued to play, however, until around the six-minute mark, and was subsequently ruled out for the second half with knee soreness. ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported after the game that Toppin would require an MRI to determine the severity of the injury.
In 17.1 minutes per game, the exact same amount of playing time he got last season, the third-year forward has averaged 7.7 points and 3.8 rebounds. This represents a bit of a decline statistically, but it is difficult to separate those numbers from Toppin's limited role. His usage rate has dropped from 20.5 percent to 18.7 percent, and catch-and-shoot 3s now represent more than half (3.5) of his total shot attempts (6.8).
Toppin is making 36.8 percent of those catch-and-shoot 3s, easily a career high, but New York did not draft him with the No. 8 pick in 2020 so he could spot up on the perimeter. He has shown the ability to be an effective roll man, but, since he has played 84 percent of his minutes next to a center this season, he has rarely had the opportunity to do that.
"We'll figure it out," Thibodeau said. "I like the idea of RJ being there some. I think he showed us last year how especially he could be at the 4, so that could be a possibility."
Thibodeau has gone with a nine-man rotation recently. With Toppin out of the picture for a few weeks and Barrett spending at least some time at the 4, there could be minutes available on the wing for Cam Reddish or Evan Fournier, who have both been collecting DNP-CDs. The New York Daily News' Stefan Bondy reported Wednesday that the Knicks were working with Reddish's reps to find a trade, but .