Branden Dawson Injury: Updates on Michigan State Forward's Hand and Return

Joseph ZuckerFeatured ColumnistJanuary 23, 2014

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Updates From Thursday, Feb. 27

Joe Rexrode of The Detroit Free-Press has the latest on Branden Dawson:

Dawson will play Saturday for No. 18 MSU against Illinois (4 p.m., ESPN2) after missing the past nine games with a broken right hand.

"He's gonna play with a little bit of a brace on that doesn't seem like it affects a lot of things, but it still is there," Izzo said of Dawson. "How much I play him, I have no clue. I might know a little more today and tomorrow."

Original Text

Branden Dawson must not have been happy with his previous performance. The Michigan State junior forward broke his right hand after slamming it down on a desk during a film session, according to Joe Rexrode of the Detroit Free Press.   

Rexrode reports Dawson is out "four-to-five weeks and will have surgery" on the hand. Dawson spoke on the matter:

“I’ll be fine,” he said. “I was out with an ACL injury (his freshman) year and I came back from it.”

If things go as hoped, it’s possible he could be back as early as MSU’s Feb. 23 visit to Michigan — but he’ll definitely miss the No. 21 Wolverines’ visit to the Breslin Center on Saturday to take on the No. 3 Spartans (18-1, 7-0 Big Ten).

It's certainly one of the strangest injuries you'll hear this season in college basketball and is just the latest instance of bad luck in what has been a crazy season for the Spartans. Just when one player gets healthy for Tom Izzo, another goes down.

Now, Michigan State will very likely take on the No. 21 Michigan Wolverines without its two best rebounders. Gillian Van Stratt of reported that Adreian Payne remains doubtful for the game after he sprained his foot.

Dawson is the team's fourth-leading scorer (10.2 points per game). It will be paramount that he can return with a few games left in the regular season, so he is at the top of his game in time for the NCAA tournament.