The Charlotte Bobcats were hit with some unpleasant news Thursday afternoon as the team learned that center Brendan Haywood will be expected to miss about 12 weeks of basketball. Haywood was diagnosed with a stress fracture that will sadly require surgery to fix.
This specific injury has struck in the NBA before and sometimes it doesn’t even require the need of surgery. However, Brendan Haywood will just have to deal with being one of the guys that does require surgery. He will undergo the operation soon and it will involve placing two screws within his bone to strengthen the fracture, helping it to heal. He will be immobilized for 12-straight weeks and then will be scanned shortly after to see if he is ready to return to basketball activities.
How will Haywood’s sudden injury affect the Cats? It will leave them with one less body running the court when a center needs rest. Now some of you may question how that affects them, but honestly it’s real simple. Al Jefferson is not going to be playing 40 minutes a game and now with Haywood gone for 12 weeks it means either Bismack Biyombo or Jefferson will get increased minutes. One thing that the Cats don’t want to do is overuse their players, and managing around Haywood’s injury might be a little hard.
The Cats only have three centers on the roster going into the upcoming 2013-2014 season, and losing Haywood possibly all the way until late December is still a huge hit, even though he is a guy who we will only be seeing get about 10-12 minutes on the court. Having his minutes up for grabs means that Steve Clifford will have to distribute the time properly among Jefferson and Biyombo (backup center). If either player isn’t over worked with the idea of more minutes (Jefferson will already be playing 30+ a game) then the Cats will be quite alright with two active centers on the roster until Haywood returns in either late December or early injury.
We can’t be so sure just when Haywood will be back; you never know with injuries. The longer the Cats will are without him, the worse it is for the team. Losing a body his size can really affect a team like the Bobcats. On the bright side, I think Biyombo and Jefferson will do a fine job managing more minutes.