Steven Adams To Miss Entire Season After Knee Surgery

Grizzlies center Steven Adams will undergo season-ending knee surgery, the team announced (via Twitter).

The procedure will address his right posterior cruciate ligament, as “non-operative rehabilitation” failed to fix instability issues in the knee. He’s expected to make a full recovery in time for the 2024/25 season, the team added.

An injury to the knee sidelined Adams in January of last season. He was cleared to take part in training camp and was able to play in two of Memphis’ preseason games, averaging 4.5 points and 5.0 rebounds in 13.6 minutes per night.

According to Damichael Cole of The Commercial Appeal (Twitter link), the Grizzlies considered knee surgery for Adams after the end of last season, but opted to try the non-surgical approach instead. Cole also speculates that Memphis will be in the market for another big man in light of today’s news (Twitter link).

Memphis used Jaren Jackson Jr. at center in a smaller lineups after the loss of Adams last season. The Grizzlies missed Adams’ physical presence in the middle en route to a first-round playoff exit.

The team already has 15 guaranteed contracts, but will begin the season without Adams, Ja Morant, who will serve a 25-game suspension, and Brandon Clarke, who is rehabbing an injury, notes Bobby Marks of ESPN (Twitter link). He points out that Memphis can file for a disabled player exception to replace Adams, which would be valued at $6.3MM, half of his $12.6MM salary. However, the Grizzlies would have to open a roster spot to use it.

Morant can be moved to the suspended list after five games, creating a roster opening, so Memphis may look for another big man rather than a guard to replace Morant. The Grizzlies, who are $17.1MM away from the luxury tax, also have a $12.4MM non-taxpayer mid-level exception, a $7.5MM trade exception and a $4.5MM bi-annual exception available, according to Marks.

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