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Utah Jazz's Earl Watson to undergo MRI for sprained knee

Published January 12, 2012 1:08 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Jazz guard Earl Watson (left knee) will undergo a magnetic-resonance imaging exam Thursday, the team announced.

He is still officially listed as day-to-day. Utah will update his status Friday in advance of a home game Saturday against New Jersey.

Watson sprained his knee with 5 minutes, 49 seconds left during the fourth quarter of the Jazz's 90-87 home loss Wednesday to the Los Angeles Lakers.

"When Raja [Bell] went to try to block the shot, he swung his leg and he kicked my knee. My knee went in," Watson told The Salt Lake Tribune after the loss.

Watson fell to the hardwood in pain after being kicked by Bell and soon went to the locker room.

Watson was initially listed as questionable to return. He didn't play again during the game, though, finishing with four points and four assists in 22:19.

The Jazz announced Watson was day-to-day about 20 minutes after the Lakers' victory.

Watson was frustrated by the loss and his injury. And while he was hopeful the blow to his knee was "nothing serious … just a hyperextension or a sprain," he acknowledged he'd receive a MRI Thursday if there was swelling.

The 11-year guard is averaging 3.6 points and is second on the team in assists (4.3). Watson, 32, is the key to a Jazz second unit that outscored the Lakers 35-11 Wednesday.

If Watson is unable to play Saturday, veteran Jamaal Tinsley will back up starter Devin Harris.

Brian T. Smith

Twitter: @tribjazz