The San Antonio Spurs are off to a blazing start to the 2012-13 NBA season, but suffered a major setback when it was announced that SF Stephen Jackson will miss up to six weeks with a fracture on his right pinky finger.
UPDATE: Monday, December 17 at 10:38 a.m. ET
Great news for Spurs fans as Stephen Jackson (finger) is expected to return to action tonight, according to San Antonio Express-News' Dan McCarney.
Spurs swingman Stephen Jackson couldn’t pick a better time to return from his broken finger, as he indicated he will via Twitter following Saturday’s victory over Boston. (If so, he and Ibaka will share the court for the first time since the former threatened the latter — again via Twitter.) Jackson ranks ninth in the NBA with 0.65 points allowed per possession on 32.5-percent shooting. He helped limit Durant to 23 points in the previous meeting.
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Mike Monroe of the San Antonio Express-News had the scoop on Monday night.
Spurs Stephen Jackson out 4-6 weeks with non-displaced fracture of right pinky finger— Mike Monroe (@Monroe_SA) November 20, 2012
Jackson was filling in as a starter for a second straight game, as the regular starting swingman, Kawhi Leonard, is currently sidelined with a quad injury.
The 12-year veteran took himself out of Monday night’s contest against the Los Angeles Clippers to have his finger evaluated.
This latest injury leaves the Spurs razor thin at the 3. In fact, the team has absolutely no SF depth remaining, and will likely have to slide shooting guards Manu Ginobili and Danny Green down to the 3 until Leonard can return.
These mounting injuries are having an impact on the Spurs' ability to win games. After Jackson departed on Monday, his team struggled mightily and was outscored 29-14 in the second period. They ended up losing 92-87 to the Clips.
There are now rumblings that Leonard may return early from a quad injury that was initially expected to keep him out 10 to 14 days.
Coach Gregg Popovich knows just how important each one of these regular season games can be, and losing too many in a row due to personnel and injury problems could cost the Spurs a valuable playoff seeding.
With Jackson out four to six weeks, the team can’t afford to have small guards and slow power forwards fill in at SF for even another game. However, coach Pop will do his best to guide them through and should hopefully have second-year standout Leonard back in the lineup sooner than later.
We’ll keep you updated right here on the latest breaking news concerning Stephen Jackson’s pinky injury and his timetable for a return, as well as what the Spurs plan to do in his absence.