The Utah Jazz lost far more than a preseason game Saturday night at EnergySolutions Arena.
Rookie point guard Trey Burke suffered a fractured index finger on his right hand during the L.A. Clippers’ lopsided 106-74 win over the Jazz.
Burke, a projected cornerstone in Utah’s rebuilding this season, will be examined by a specialist on Sunday, when a timetable for his return will be determined.
Burke was hurt in the first quarter against the Clippers. He returned briefly in the second quarter but did not play after halftime.
In a stone-silent locker room after the game, Burke said, “I just tried to make a pocket pass off the pick and roll. I don’t know if it was Chris Paul’s hand or what, but somebody’s hand was right there. I hit it hard enough so it popped out.”
Burke spoke to reporters in front of his locker, with a large splint wrapped around his injured finger.
“Obviously it’s not something I want,” he said. “I’ve never been an injury-prone type of guy, so I’ll just try to stay positive through this. It’s a minor setback right now.”
Burke left the game with 5:20 left in the first quarter. He returned with 9:25 remaining in the second quarter, with the Jazz already trailing, 29-19. He left for good with 1:51 to play in the half.
Asked why he returned to the game and tried playing with what turned out to be a fractured finger, Burke said, “It looked pretty bad when I looked at it. But we popped it back in place and I thought I could get back out there. But it was too tough to dribble the ball and pass it.”
In Burke’s absence, John Lucas III played 20 minutes against the Clippers. He finished with nine points and three assists on 3-for-6 shooting.
Free agent Scott Machado played the fourth quarter at point guard. He missed three shots and failed to score, but he handed out four assists.
Burke’s injury is “a significant blow for us,” coach Tyrone Corbin said. “It’s unfortunate for us to get the news that it is a fracture. … We’ll see what the specialist says but it’s a downer for us.”Next Page »