Mar 22, 2011, 2:32 PM EDT
An MRI on Tim Duncan’s ankle showed “between a grade one and grade two sprain” Spurs GM R.C. Buford said, reports Mike Monroe on twitter.
A grade one sprain would mean about the two-week recovery Duncan himself said after the injury. A grade two sprain — which means a partial tearing of the ligaments – would be more like a month. The Spurs will announce a timetable for Duncans’ return in 48 to 72 hours, Buford said.
The NBA playoffs start in three weeks.
Duncan injured his ankle in the second quarter Monday when came down on the foot of Golden State’s Ekpe Udoh and his ankle rolled.
“We can win without Timmy in the rest of the regular season and get that top seed,” Tony Parker said. “But we’re not going anywhere in the playoffs without him.”
The Spurs will finish with the top seed in the NBA, they have a comfortable 7 game lead over the Lakers out West and 6.5 games over Boston and Chicago for the overall. The Spurs likely would win a first-round playoff match up with Memphis, New Orleans or Houston without a 100 percent Duncan, although they could be pushed six games or more.
But by the time of a second round matchup — probably against Oklahoma City — they will need him back and 100 percent.
So expect for the rest of the regular season for the Spurs to take a page out of the Celtics playbook and not rush Duncan back at all. It’s not like this veteran team that has played the first 70 games of the season together need him to work on fitting in. But come the playoffs, you can expect Duncan to play. Or you can expect the Spurs to be in trouble.
- Report: Nike gets chance to match 10-year, $265 million offer to Kevin Durant from Under Armour 1
- Should NBA coaches get NFL style challenge flags? 18
- Report: Suns discussing trade possibilities for Eric Bledsoe 26
- Report: Sixers may look to trade for Amar’e Stoudemire at this season’s deadline 32
- Kevin Durant reiterates that rest was his reason for withdrawing from Team USA 9
- Kobe Bryant says he will not be same player as before, says he’s evolved into something equally good 25
- Report: Agent for Greg Monroe pursued sign-and-trade deals with five teams, including Thunder and Blazers 26
- Derrick Rose sits out another Team USA practice, not likely to start Wednesday 23