Utah Jazz: Williams' ankle injury won't let him play for at least two weeks

Published October 20, 2008 3:21 pm
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The Jazz announced Monday afternoon that MRI exam results showed Deron Williams suffered a second-degree left ankle sprain in Saturday's preseason game against Chicago and will not return for "a minimum of two weeks."

That timetable would seemingly rule out Williams for the Jazz's regular-season opener Oct. 29 against Denver as well as one other game. The earliest Williams would return would be Nov. 3 at the L.A. Clippers.

A second-degree sprain is characterized by partial ligament tearing in the ankle. The Jazz said the MRI "showed all bone structure and tendons in and around the ankle to be normal."

The Jazz likely will have to be conservative with Williams since he has to get through the entire 5 1/2 month-season after returning from the injury.

Kyle Korver said he talked to Williams on Sunday and said he was in good spirits. Korver said he thought Williams' goal was to return for opening night Oct. 29 against Denver.

"Whether or not his ankle lets him do that, we'll see, time will tell," Korver said. "I think he's sprained it a bunch of times before. He's never had one swell up on him like this one has, but he's sprained it a bunch of times.

"As much as that's not a whole lot of fun, it does help you for the next time it happens, you can usually recover a little bit faster."

Korver said Williams was "a little bummed, you know, but he's also missing out on some preseason practices, so he's probably not too sad about that."

Williams suffered the injury when he landed on the foot of Chicago's Derrick Rose on a three-point attempt in the first quarter of Saturday's game. He had to be carried off the court, taken by wheelchair to the locker room and left the arena on crutches.

Jazz coach Jerry Sloan, meanwhile, said he was committed to starting C.J. Miles and bringing Andrei Kirilenko off the bench even if Williams was out for a significant period.

Sloan said Kirilenko's play with the second team was too valuable and added that he thought Miles and Ronnie Brewer both could help backup point guard Ronnie Price handle the ball in Williams' absence.

Brevin Knight missed practice Monday as he continues to try to heal his injured left thumb, which he jammed in Friday's preseason game. Knight is day to day and could return Tuesday.

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