NBA News: Mike Conley Out Indefinitely With Fractured Vertebrae
The hits just keep coming for the Memphis Grizzlies. Just when the Memphis Grizzlies are making strides in their push for a playoff spot, another player went down again with an injury. This time it's starting point guard Mike Conley.
Memphis Grizzlies starting point guard Mike Conley will be out indefinitely because of fractures on his vertebrae. The Memphis Grizzlies announced on Tuesday that Mike Conley was diagnosed with fractures of the transverse process bones in the vertebrae of his lower back. Mike Conley is expected to miss at least six weeks and he will be re-evaluated after four weeks, the Memphis Grizzlies said.
Mike Conley suffered the injury during the third quarter of Monday's game between the Charlotte Hornets and the Memphis Grizzlies. The Charlotte Hornets won that game 104-84. Mike Conley scored 14 points to go along with 2 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 steals before leaving the game in the third quarter. He did not return to finish the game.
Mike Conley got injured after taking a charge on a driving Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. While falling down, Mike Conley got hit hard on his back by Charlotte Hornets center Frank Kaminsky's left knee. He stayed on the floor in obvious pain. He got up later and went back to the locker room.
During that game, Vince Carter also got hurt. Vince Carter left early in the fourth quarter and did not return. The Memphis Grizzlies announced that Vince Carter suffered a strained right hip flexor. He is still questionable for Wednesday night's game against the Toronto Raptors.
The injury to Mike Conley, 29, is a major blow to the Memphis Grizzlies. Mike Conley is the Memphis Grizzlies leading scorer and floor leader. This season, he's averaging 19.2 points, 3.6 rebounds and 5.7 assists. Together with center Marc Gasol, they led the Memphis Grizzlies to an 11-7 record to start the season and are currently in fifth place in the Western Conference.
The Memphis Grizzlies are already without Zach Randolph, Chandler Parsons, Brandan Wright and James Ennis. Zach Randolph is on a personal leave due to the death of his mother on Thanksgiving Day. Chandler Parsons has a bone bruise in his left knee and would miss at least two weeks. Brandan Wright had arthroscopic surgery Nov. 15 on his left ankle with no timetable on his return while James Ennis is out since straining his calf muscle on Nov.21.