The Portland Trail Blazers will be without one of their leading scorers for a significant period of time. Trail Blazers coach Terry Stotts told reporters on Monday that CJ McCollum will have his foot injury re-evaluated in a week’s time, but he’s going to be out a good deal longer than that. The Blazers announced late Monday that McCollum has a small hairline fracture in his left foot along with a mid-foot sprain that will keep him sidelined for at least four weeks. In the meantime, the star guard will be in a walking boot.
McCollum suffered the injury over the weekend in the Blazers’ 112-106 win over the Atlanta Hawks. He left the game at halftime as a precaution, and later underwent X-rays and an MRI to determine the extent of the injury. McCollum has already broken that foot twice during his career, so it makes sense that the Blazers want to be as cautious as possible, especially considering how well McCollum has been playing this season.
Typically seen as the Robin to Damian Lillard’s Batman, McCollum has been every bit as good as his All-NBA teammate through the first month. He’s putting up 26.7 points and five assists per game, while shooting 44.1 percent from the 3-point line — all of which are career-highs. And when he’s on the floor, the Blazers’ offense has been 15.6 points per 100 possessions better than when he sits. Had he remained healthy, he was on pace to make his first All-Star team this season.
Without McCollum on Monday, the Blazers suffered a 21-point loss to the San Antonio Spurs to fall to 8-6. Looking ahead at their schedule, McCollum will miss at least three more games, including their back-to-back with the Memphis Grizzlies, a series that figures to have major playoff implications in the Western Conference.
After barely making the playoffs last season in large part due to injuries, the Blazers have had to figure out how to play without some key players. In addition to McCollum, they’re also currently without Zach Collins and Jusuf Nurkic. Collins needed another surgery on his ankle and is out indefinitely, while Nurkic suffered a fractured wrist earlier this month and is out for at least eight weeks.
Courtesy: CBS Sports