Fantasy Basketball Injury Report
It's been a while since I covered injuries. Let's get to it, in rough order of fantasy relevance.
Theo Ratliff, C, Portland
Last Friday, Ratliff missed a game against Orlando with what was called a sore ankle. Joel Przybilla stepped up for 42 minutes, and went for 15 points, 12 rebounds, and 4 blocks.
Ratliff returned on Sunday, and Przybilla played only 23 minutes, going for 5 points, 5 rebounds, 1 block, and 3 turnovers. Needless to say, I started Przybilla for the latter game and not for the first game.
Last night, Ratliff played only 3 minutes. The Oregonian explained why today: "Blazers center Theo Ratliff had a magnetic resonance imaging on his left foot Monday, but the test was negative. Ratliff played three minutes in the first quarter, but reinjured the foot, and did not return."
Hmmm... A mysterious foot injury. It might be plantar fasciitis, it might be something else. Whatever it is, it's bothering Theo a lot if he's getting MRIs on his foot. With reinjury, it sounds like something that could persist.
If Joel Przybilla has found his way to your league's waiver wire because of his atrocious start to the season, now might be a good time to drop an early-season fluke like Smush Parker and stash away the Vanilla Gorilla.
If it isn't this injury that takes Ratliff out for an extended period, it will be another. Last year, it was his shoulder. This year, it's his foot. The guy is made of glass.
Carmelo Anthony, F, Denver Nuggets
Carmelo limped off the court against the Nets on Monday after spraining his ankle a little more than a minute into the game. He's also expected to miss tonight's game against the Hornets. George Karl says he's optimistic the Melo will play on Friday against Phoenix.
Josh Howard, F, Dallas Mavericks
The news isn't as positive for Josh Howard.
I didn't see this injury, but reports said that he turned his ankle nearly all the way around. An MRI revealed a "moderate sprain" of his ankle, which is projected to keep him out for 2-3 weeks.
Marquis Daniels sees a huge increase in value during this time, as does Jason Terry, who seems to have found his stroke.
Andrei Kirilenko, F, Utah Jazz
The good news is that Kirilenko is back from an ankle sprain that kept him out for seven games over a period of two weeks. The bad news is that he was a non-factor, going for 7 points, 2 boards, 3 dimes, 2 blocks, and 3 TOs in a 24-point blowout loss to the Pacers.
His fantasy owners hope that he can keep dropping dimes at a career-best rate while returning to his career shooting averages. He'll shake the rust off soon; start him.
Peja Stojakovic, F, Sacramento Kings
Stojakovic returned from a lingering hand injury to score 5 points in 22 minutes against the Horents last night. Ugh. His hand injury has followed him the whole season, and doesn't seem to be all the way better.
Start him, but recognize this is something that could linger.
Eddy Curry, C, New York Knicks
Curry hopes to be back from a calf injury to play against his ex-teammates on the Bulls tonight. Will his starting job be waiting for him when he does? Channing Frye has filled in more than admirably in Curry's absence.
Curry recently said, "Next year, I'll be unbelievable... I watch Sweetney and can see the things they [Knicks big man coaches Aguirre and Herb Wiliams] taught him. It's crazy." Huh. Nothing like making your new employer forget about the guy they let go, eh?
Eddy's been thinking about next year every year since he came into the league, and the results show it. DO IT THIS YEAR, EDDY. Shaq thinks Eddy will come into his own and become an elite NBA center. Call me unconvinced.
Leandro Barbosa, G, Phoenix Suns
Barbosa is progressing well in his return from a sprained knee and could be back on the floor as early as next week. Keep your fingers crossed. His nightly numbers make him one of the Top 50 fantasy players in the game, according to fantasyanalyzer.com.
Rick Brunson, G, Seattle SuperSonics
Brunson will miss at least six weeks after tearing the plantar fascia in his foot. Yawn.
Jonathan Bender, F, Indiana Pacers
Jonathan Bender may never be able to play again after receving word that the cartilage in both of his knees is completely gone. He hasn't played a whole lot during his 4-year, $28 million contract. Pacers fans can thank Isiah Thomas for failing to do his due diligence. A major yawn from a fantasy perspective.
That's it. Let me know in the comments section if there's anyone I missed.