Blazers Lose Jusuf Nurkic With “Devastating” Injury

2:55pm: Nurkic underwent surgery to repair his compound fractures today, tweets Shams Charania of The Athletic. While Nurkic has been ruled out indefinitely, the good news is that there was no nerve or muscle damage in his leg, league sources tell Charania.

8:57am: Trail Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic suffered compound fractures to his left tibia and fibula last night, putting him out of action for the rest of the season and probably well into next season, writes Joe Freeman of The Oregonian.

The injury occurred in the second overtime of a win over the Nets as Nurkic landed on several players after jumping for a rebound. The crowd went silent before chanting Nurkic’s name in a show of support. Teammates turned away because of the gruesome nature of the injury.

“It made me sick to my stomach,” Damian Lillard said.

After a long examination by trainers and team doctors, Nurkic received a huge ovation as he was carried off on a stretcher. Coach Terry Stotts called the injury “devastating” as it casts a shadow over the rest of the season for a Portland team that clinched a playoff spot with the victory.

“It’s terrible,” Zach Collins said. “Obviously you never want to see that happen, especially with your own teammate that you go to war with every night. Nurk, he’s been having a hell of a season. He had an amazing game tonight. And for it to end like that for him, it’s just tough. All we can do is be there for him and hope he’s in as little pain as possible and knows that we’ve got his back.”

At age 24, Nurkic was putting together his best season, averaging career highs with 15.6 PPG and 10.4 RPG. He is signed for nearly $25MM over the next two seasons and has a non-guaranteed $12MM salary for 2021/22. His absence should create a greater role for Enes Kanter, who signed with Portland last month after reaching a buyout with the Knicks.

Players from around the NBA sent messages of support on social media last night, while the Trail Blazers struggled to deal with the impact of losing a beloved teammate and a vital part of their hopes for the postseason.

“I’m going to go home and pray for him because this is way bigger than basketball,” Kanter said. “We clinched a playoff spot and we’re not even celebrating. He was a big part of our family — not our team, our family — and I just don’t know what to say. It’s definitely tough.”

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13 thoughts on “Blazers Lose Jusuf Nurkic With “Devastating” Injury

  1. acarneglia

    Feel terrible for Nurkic, he was having a hell of a season and definitely a MIP candidate in my book. Here’s to a speedy recovery for the Bosnian Bear

  2. CubsRule08

    Wishing a speedy recovery to you, Nurkic. Definitely a devastating injury, but I’m sure you can come back from it

  3. afsooner02

    One of the most gruesome injuries I have ever seen.

    Hope he gets recovers as quickly as possible.

  4. benster04

    a very devestating injury to a class act guy who has qorked his butt off to become an all around all star. ironically because of this tragedy, it brings back into light kantor who will shine after the knicks gave him a bum rap and treated him poorly… im glad he gets another chance with a top notch organization

  5. With thre amount of depth that they have at the 5, the loss shouldn’t be too bad. Though I hope he gets well soon.

  6. InvalidUserID

    Hayward last year and now Nurkic, those two are the worst I’ve seen. It might be recently bias but Nurkic looks worse and considering it’s a compound fracture, it’s all bad.

    Wishing him a speedy and full recovery.

  7. JonnyLucas

    Heartbreaking. He was having a big year, was looking at a big big contract. I pray he recovers as well as PG

  8. yoyo137

    I was so excited to get off work last night so I could watch the Blazers clinch a playoff spot. I wish we would have just lost in regulation. Being a Blazers fan is so tough man. Seeing that last night made me feel physically sick. Today’s games are starting right now but I feel like I don’t even want to watch the NBA for the rest of the season.

    I’m glad there was no nerve damage or muscle damage and I’m praying for Nurkic to come back as good or better than he was. People are saying it’s the same as the Paul George injury so I’m optimistic about that. This is my favorite Blazers team I’ve ever seen. It really sucks that injuries ruin everything. I hate Jared Dudley.

    • D$!LLKU$H-og

      Wish they would’ve lost in regulation too. Nets really needed the win and Nurk didn’t need to be out there in double ot. He was wrecking them. Hope he recovers quickly.

  9. x%sure

    I have never seen the point of five minute OT periods. Players just get tired and bunker down to prevent this kind of thing. The quality of play suffers. Weird, off-norm stats emerge. And mostly, a game that was once tense where every posession mattered, goes to sleep for about ten minutes while they re-parry.

    Just golden-goal it instead… continue play after 0:00 with the “clock” (game timer) adding seconds not removing them… or go to first team up by four, which is a traditional form. Get a real resolution in real time. Go until you get a winner.

    Workers should get time-and-a-half for OT!

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