Late in the second overtime of Portland’s win over the Brooklyn Nets, Trail Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic landed awkwardly on his left foot after jumping for an offensive rebound, and his lower leg folded horrifyingly under him. This was one of those injuries where players on both teams sprinted away from him, and his teammates were openly weeping while trainers looked him over. The video is extraordinarily gruesome, and includes an audible snapping sound:
Nurkić is an extraordinarily talented big man who is having the best season of his career, averaging a double-double on career-high 57 percent true shooting. He’s preternaturally nimble for a guy his size, and has anchored Portland’s surprisingly stout defense since he arrived in a trade from Denver, and the team will be greatly diminished heading into the playoffs without him. More importantly, this injury appears to be every bit as severe as similar injuries to Paul George and Gordon Hayward, which means it could very well alter the trajectory of Nurkić’s career, at the very least. This post will update as information is shared about his condition.
UPDATE: Nurkić’s season is now officially over, although this announcement was mostly a formality: