According to NBA.com, the star big man underwent surgery Saturday to repair a non-displaced Type II fracture of his navicular bone after initially suffering the injury Feb. 8.
Per the NBA.com report, Grizzlies general manager Chris Wallace is optimistic the 31-year-old Spaniard will recover in time for the 2016-17 campaign:
Marc remains a cornerstone of our franchise and we are pleased to hear that the surgery went according to plan. Marc's determination and competitive spirit will serve him, his family and the team well as he begins the healing and rehab process from which we expect him to make a full recovery. We are confident we will have Marc back anchoring our team next season and beyond.
Gasol also commented on the surgery and is already looking ahead to next season: "It is frustrating to not be on the court with my teammates at this time, but I understand that the focus of this process is on long-term health and stability. I look forward to the road ahead and a full and successful recovery."
The 7-footer was enjoying another strong year before going down, with averages of 16.6 points, 7.0 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 1.3 blocks per contest.
While the Grizz are currently fifth in the Western Conference at 32-23, making a deep playoff run without the two-time All-Star and 2013 NBA Defensive Player of the Year will be an extremely tall order.
Aside from the setback to Memphis, ESPN.com's Marc Stein also pointed out Gasol could miss the 2016 Rio Olympics this summer, which would damage Spain's gold-medal hopes.
Gasol is easily one of the best pure centers in the game due to his acumen at both ends of the floor, including his ability to pass like a guard at times.
There is no suitable replacement for his skill set on the Memphis roster, which could push power forward Brandan Wright into a bigger role or force the Grizzlies to go small.
Gasol's versatility is Grizzlies' best weapon, though, which is why anything other than a first-round exit in the playoffs seems unlikely.
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