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Josh Lewenberg: JV’s heading to the locker room with just over a minute left in the half. Turned his right ankle a couple possessions ago, played through it
Toronto Raptors centre Jonas Valanciunas was sidelined for Sunday’s game against the Sacramento Kings with a left knee contusion. Valanciunas injured his knee during the week and suffered some pre-game swelling, according to a team official. He’s averaging 11 rebounds and 13.8 points this season, scoring a career-high 32 points and grabbing a game-high 11 rebounds in the season-opener versus the Detroit Pistons.
Josh Lewenberg: How close is Valanciunas to 100%? “Close. I’m ready to go. Percentage wise? I don’t know. My ankle doesn’t say the percentage”
Sidelined Toronto Raptors center Jonas Valanciunas – out since Game 3 of the Miami series – is inching closer to a return and could be available for Game 4 of the Eastern Conference finals against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday. Asked if Valanciunas will play, Raptors coach Dwane Casey said, “We’ll see.”
Ryan Wolstat: Jonas Valanciunas says he’s at 50%.
The Toronto Raptors will not have starting center Jonas Valanciunas, the team’s third-leading scorer in the postseason, for Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Cleveland Cavaliers. There doesn’t appear to be much optimism for the remainder of the series either. “He’s going to get treatment day to day,” Raptors head coach Dwane Casey said during a conference call on Monday. “I don’t foresee it but I’m not committing to it. Just going to see how his body reacts and comes through rehab. It’s going to be very difficult for Game 2. But to cancel him out for the entire series, I don’t know.”
Since the injury, he hasn’t done much on the court, only shooting free throws from time to time, as the Raptors continue to be cautious with their talented big man. “We’re not going to jeopardize further hurting his ankle just to get him out there for a game,” Casey said. “If he’s not 100 percent we’re not going to damage it.”
Lue said the Cavs will prepare as if Valanciunas will play. And as for the extended rest? “I’ve always said anytime you get an opportunity to get some rest throughout the course of our season, it’s always beneficial for anybody,” James said. “Doesn’t matter if you’re a 31-year-old guy who’s played a lot of basketball or you’re a 19-year-old kid who just came into the league. It doesn’t matter; you get a couple days in the postseason, there’s a benefit.”
Eric Koreen: Jonas Valanciunas is out for the rest of the Miami series with a sprained right ankle, Raptors announce.
Mike Mazzeo: #Raptors C Jonas Valanciunas has a right ankle sprain and will not return. No need for X-ray.
Head coach Dwane Casey said after practice on Sunday that starting centre Jonas Valanciunas will play against the Bulls on Monday after missing 17 games with a broken finger on his non-shooting hand. Toronto already boasts the NBA’s fourth-best offence and now returns its most efficient scorer, who averaged 12.7 points and 9.3 rebounds in 14 games before getting hurt, on 55.6% shooting.
“It feels good, ready to go, 100% healed,” Valanciunas said, adding he just wants to add to what the Raptors have done recently. “They were doing a good job so I was sitting on the bench enjoying, but that was hard to see them doing so good and like I can’t do anything (to help),” Valanciunas said.
Valanciunas is expected to miss approximately six weeks, league sources said.
Valanciunas was at practice on Saturday but obviously not participating. The left hand was already in a temporary cast. Casey spoke in terms of options at his disposal to fill the minutes of a guy who is in the midst of a career season. “We could got small also with Luis (Scola),” Casey offered after Bismack Biyombo and Lucas Nogueira were offered up as possible replacements. “That’s something we worked on today just until Lucas gets back.
After undergoing further tests on Saturday, Toronto Raptors center Jonas Valanciunas will bypass surgery on the fracture in his left hand, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
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February 24, 2018 | 8:23 pm EST Update
Nick Friedell: Thibs wanted no part of giving a timeframe on Butler’s absence but Taj offered this observation. At a minimum it appears as if Butler will miss multiple weeks. Taj: “The doctors are saying some good things so we’ll see in a few weeks maybe.”
KC Johnson: Taj Gibson on Jimmy Butler: “He was talking so much trash on the plane, you didn’t even really think he was hurt. He came in today making jokes, being his normal self. I think he’s fine mentally.”
Darren Wolfson: Jimmy Butler is a real mensch. He’s spending time with a young man who’s battling health hurdles. A torn meniscus wouldn’t keep Jimmy from such a commitment (photo from @jbrioschi). #Twolves #AllEyesNorth