Knicks News: RJ Barrett out at Least 1 Week After Suffering Ankle Injury

Blake SchusterContributor IIIJanuary 17, 2020

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - JANUARY 14:  RJ Barrett #9 of the New York Knicks waits for a free throw during a game against the Milwaukee Bucks at Fiserv Forum on January 14, 2020 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
Stacy Revere/Getty Images

The New York Knicks' rebuild took another hit with rookie small forward RJ Barrett suffering a sprained ankle during Thursday's 121-98 loss to the Phoenix Suns.  

The team announced Barrett will be re-evaluated in one week after his X-rays came back negative. 

The injury occurred in the third quarter when Barrett was fouled by Ricky Rubio on a drive to the basket. 

"It hurts. I never really been hurt before,'' he told reporters after the game. "I don't remember the last time I missed a game. But we play so many games, it was bound to happen.''

Barrett hasn't been the Knicks' savior this season after being selected third overall in the 2019 draft, but this year was more about getting the Duke product used to the rigors of the NBA than it was to dominate the league. New York's roster makeup would back that up—a mix of raw prospects and middling 20-somethings. 

Considering fellow potential Knicks building blocks Frank Ntilikina and Dennis Smith Jr. have also had trouble staying healthy this season, 2019-20 essentially amounted to a rotating cast of players testing out their ability to become a focal point of New York's offense. 

With the Knicks more likely to win the draft lottery than make the playoffs, the loss here is that Barrett (14.1 points, 5.2 rebounds per game) won't get time on the floor to adapt his game to the NBA. 

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