Written By Gilbert McGregor
The Jazz have been dealt another blow as it appears they'll be without three-time Defensive Player of the Year Rudy Gobert for some time.
In Sunday's two-point loss to the Warriors, Gobert exited with just over two minutes remaining in regulation with what is being ruled as a left calf strain.
This season, Gobert is making a case for a record-tying fourth Defensive Player of the Year award and a third All-Star nod with averages of 16.0 points, 15.1 rebounds and 2.3 blocks while shooting a league-best 70.7 percent from the field.
What's next for Gobert and the Jazz? Here's what we know about his injury and how long he could be sidelined.
What is Rudy Gobert's injury?
On Sunday, Jan. 23, Gobert exited a close game with the Warriors with two and a half minutes remaining in regulation. After initially leaving to stretch his left leg on the sideline, the injury was officially ruled as a strained left calf, which would him out of the remainder of the game.
According to a medical expert, orthopaedic surgeon Dr. Michael S. George of the KSF Orthopaedic Center in Houston, Texas, "calf muscle strains occur when the knee suddenly extends with the foot flexed up. There can often be a palpable or audible pop sometimes called coup de fouet, or snap of the whip, which can be similar to the pop that occurs with an Achilles tendon tear."
Per Dr. George, the extent of the injury is often determined by an MRI, with a Grade 1 injury involving disruption of less than 10 percent of the muscle fibers.
The extent of Gobert's injury has yet to be determined.
How long will Rudy Gobert be out?
Following the game, Gobert spoke on the injury, saying it will be difficult to gauge how long he will be sidelined. The 29-year-old did add that the team plans to take a cautious approach.
Rudy Gobert: "It's just a little strain. I've never had this before, so it's hard for me to tell how many games. ... a minor injury, we're going to be cautious, obviously, but it's going to be fine."— Andy Larsen (@andyblarsen) January 24, 2022
In a slightly concerning description, Gobert added that he felt a "slow tear" right away and was unable to play through the discomfort.
While calf injuries and recovery time vary depending on the player and the severity of the injury itself, Hornets center Mason Plumlee missed four games with a calf strain earlier in the season. At the time of Gobert's injury the 30-17 Jazz, are a game behind the third-place Grizzlies and three games ahead of the fifth-place Mavericks.
More updates on Gobert's availability to come.
Jazz schedule 2021-22
|Date||Opponent||Time (ET)||National TV|
|Jan. 24||at Suns||9:00 p.m.||NBA TV|
|Jan. 26||vs. Suns||10:00 p.m.||ESPN|
|Jan. 28||at Grizzlies||8:00 p.m.||–|
|Jan. 30||at Timberwolves||8:00 p.m.||–|
|Feb. 2||vs. Nuggets||10:00 p.m.||ESPN|
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