Pacers’ Haliburton Injures Knee, Leaves Arena On Crutches

Pacers guard Tyrese Haliburton left Madison Square Garden on crutches on Wednesday night after injuring his left knee in the second half of Indiana’s game against the Knicks, according to Tim Bontemps of ESPN.

With just over two-and-a-half minutes left in the third quarter, Haliburton drove to the basket for a layup attempt and lost his right shoe while falling awkwardly to the court (video link). He hurt both his left knee and left elbow on the play, per Bontemps, though it sounds like the knee is the more pressing concern.

“He’ll get looked at (Thursday) closely,” head coach Rick Carlisle told reporters after the game. “He’s walking out of Madison Square Garden on crutches, so I would guess his availability on Friday (vs. Atlanta) will be in question, and probably Saturday (vs. Memphis), too.

“But who knows. One of the great things about Tyrese is he has been banged up the last year and a half that he’s been with us and he always wants to play. He always wants to play, and it’s something that’s really helped our culture as a team. So we’ll hope for the best. We’re surely not going to put him in harm’s way.”

The Pacers, viewed during the preseason as one of the East’s worst teams, have significantly exceeded outside expectations so far in 2022/23. Their 23-19 record puts them in a tie with New York for the No. 6 seed in the conference, and Haliburton has been a huge part of that success.

Through 40 games, the third-year point guard has made a strong case for an All-Star spot, averaging 20.2 points, a league-leading 10.2 assists, 4.0 rebounds, and 1.8 steals in 33.4 minutes per night, with a shooting line of .480/.399/.880.

Haliburton’s injury came on the same night that the Pacers were without starting center Myles Turner, who was a late scratch due to back spasms, per Bontemps.

“We finished our team meeting, and Myles had a spasm, a reaction in his back. It tightened up pretty significantly. Trainers worked on him for a while, and then he was ruled out,” Carlisle said.

Making it clear that Turner’s unexpected absence was the result of his back ailment and not a trade, Carlisle reiterated a point he made earlier in the season, telling reporters that he has “no interest” in trading the big man. As Dustin Dopirak of The Indianapolis Star notes (via Twitter), the decision on Turner’s future will ultimately be up to Indiana’s front office, but Carlisle is ensuring that his position is known.

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