The 2010-2011 NBA season may still be in its infancy stage, but that hasn’t kept a rash of injuries from wreaking havoc on many of the league’s premier names.
From coast to coast, some of the game’s top players have set aside their uniforms in exchange for street clothes, and their absence is sure to impact the complexion of the young season.
Portland Trail Blazers’ star guard Brandon Roy has yet to play a full season since entering the league in 2006, and a lingering knee injury doesn’t give hope that he will ever fulfill a full 82-game schedule. Roy left Saturday’s game against New Orleans after playing just over 20 minutes and is questionable for the remainder of the week.
Expect young Wesley Matthews to fill in the interim alongside Andre Miller. The Trailblazers like Matthews’ length on the perimeter and his streaky scoring ability, which has produced four games of 13 points or more off of Portland’s bench.
Once Roy returns, it wouldn’t be unreasonable for Portland to give him ample time to recover, thus delegating more minutes to Matthews.
About 600 miles down California’s Interstate 5, we see a similar situation for the Golden State Warriors, whose star forward David Lee has missed the past week due to an elbow laceration. Lee suffered the injury after connecting with New York’s Wilson Chandler, who lost two teeth in the incident, but Lee is expected to make his return this weekend.
Unlike Brandon Roy’s recurring injury, Lee shouldn’t feel any effects of the injured elbow as the season progresses, so expect him to return back to his double-double form as the Warriors chase a coveted playoff seed in the highly competitive Western Conference.
As if the loss of Lebron James wasn’t enough to crush the hopes of Cleveland Cavaliers fans, the groin injury suffered by star-by-default Mo Williams has shelved the guard once again.