5 NBA Injury Storylines To Watch in First Week of February

Sports Injury Central
Top 5 NBA injury storylines to watch in early February, including Steven Adams.
Top 5 NBA injury storylines to watch in early February, including Steven Adams. / ASSOCIATED PRESS

Grizzlies Likely Lose Enforcer Adams Until March

The No. 2 team in the West announced on January 24 that center Steven Adams will miss 3-to-5 weeks after he suffered a right PCL sprain when he landed awkwardly diving after the ball on the final play against the Phoenix Suns on Jan. 22.

The Pro Basketball Docs expect Adams to work on a longer non-surgical recovery timeline of 4-to-6 weeks because of the importance of the stabilizing ligament, as evidenced by Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson's recent extended absence due to lingering swelling and instability in his injured knee. 

Ja Morant's 29-year-old bodyguard leads the Grizzlies with 11.5 rebounds per game. Xavier Tillman Sr., who's averaging 6.8 points and 7.5 rebounds on 21.1 minutes in his last four games, will be the most essential fixer in this midseason stretch for Memphis. 

Portis Hurts Knee As Bucks Stars Return

Milwaukee Bucks' sixth man Bobby Portis suffered a right MCL and high-ankle sprain on Jan. 23. He is likely to miss close to six weeks and at least 10 games, according to the Pro Basketball Docs. 

The 28-year-old went down fighting rookie Jalen Duren for a rebound in the same game that both Giannis Antetokounmpo and Khris Middleton played after missing five and 18 games, respectively, with lingering knee soreness. 

The Bucks are 5-0 with a plus-12.4 point differential since Antetokounmpo and Middleton returned. Meanwhile, the combination of Joe Ingles – who returned just over a month ago from a torn ACL – Wesley Matthews and Jevon Carter are patching up Portis' contributions. 

Emrboiled In Trade Rumors, Anunoby Missing Time With Wrist Sprain

Toronto Raptors small forward OG Anunoby has already missed multiple games and will be out for at least another three after falling on his left forearm during an errant dunk attempt last Friday. 

The 25-year-old has averaged 16.9 points, 5.5 rebounds and a league-high 2.1 steals on 45.7% shooting for the scuffling Raptors, who are reportedly “taking calls” from teams interested in trading for the 6'7" fan favorite.

Precious Achiuwa has made gradual inroads into Toronto's lineup after averaging 17.2 points and 10.5 rebounds on 61.8% shooting in the last six games.

Ingram Finally Back, Williamson Still Out For Plunging Pelicans

For the third time in four NBA seasons, New Orleans Pelicans forward Zion Williamson is missing significant time with an injury. The All-Star starter was sidelined for the 15th game this season on Tuesday and will be out for at least another week with a right hamstring strain. 

Chameleonic small forward Brandon Ingram returned on Jan. 25 from a 30-game left big toe sprain and athletic forward Herbert Jones has played in seven straight after being pelled by sporadic back and knee issues as well as COVID. Rookie Dyson Daniels, however, is expected to miss additional games with a sprained ankle.

New Orleans, now 26-25, is 3-11 without Williamson and lost eight in a row entering Tuesday. 

Bulls Ball's Balky Knee May Cost Him Rest Of Season (Again)

One year and 17 days since the last time he suited up for the Bulls, point guard Lonzo Ball is “nowhere close” to returning and he may be shut down for the 2022-23 season if his recovery remains stagnant, according to multiple reports. 

The 25-year-old has undergone two left knee surgeries but reportedly still experiences chronic soreness that neither Ball, the Bulls nor any of the multiple doctors he's consulted know the source of.

Chicago, 23-27, is percentage points back of a play-in spot and may be at a crossroads as the Bulls reportedly mull trading the likes of Zach Lavine, Alex Caruso and Nikola Vucevic before the Feb. 9th deadline.  

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