The injury is a stress fracture to the slow-healing fifth metatarsal, the same kind of injury that New York Giants first-round draft pick Prince Amukamara suffered on Aug. 6 in training camp. He did not play in a game until Nov. 20.
“I had a long talk with Brook last night,” coach Avery Johnson said. “He is not in great spirits but we tried to lift his spirits to let him know that, hey, this is a little bit of a setback but he could definitely have a big-time comeback. Hopefully, once we get through with the surgery and get back to rehabbing and he can heal up and we can get him back at some point this season.”
The Nets would not say how long Lopez will be sidelined but a medical expert said it would be from six to 12 weeks, but it has the potential of being longer, depending on the degree of the stress fracture.
Dr. Victor Khabie, the chief of the department of surgery and sports medicine at Northern Westchester Hospital in Mount Kisco, N.Y., told The Associated Press the problem with injuries to the fifth metatarsal is that the blood supply to that area is poor, which prevents doctors from simply putting the foot in a cast.
“For that reason and especially with an athlete you want to get back as soon as possible, we end up doing surgery, which is inserting a metal screw intro the bone to compress the bone together,” Khabie said. “The act of inserting the screw also stimulates blood flow to the area.”
“Biomechanics are such that with a bigger guy, the more pressure you put on it, the bone has to be more solid,” Khabie said. “It may not make a difference in the healing, but it needs to be more fully healed before you let a 7-footer start jumping up and down on it.”
“I think that would be early,” he added. “If I saw him as a patient, I would say: `Listen, hopefully, we’ll get you back in three months.’ I would say that would be a very optimistic type of call. This could be season-ending, potentially, seeing how short the (NBA) season is.”
The lockout-shortened season opens this weekend and the regular season concludes at the end of April. The trade deadline is mid-March, which is important to note.View Entire Story
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