Chris Paul Out with Knee Injury
by Jason Green of Predictem.com
The New Orleans Hornets currently are in a battle to make the playoffs, as they are game out of the 8th and final playoff spot in the Western Conference as of February 2nd. Now it looks they will have to stay in the race without their best player, as All Star PG Chris Paul has an injured knee and is out indefinitely.
New Orleans did not start the season well to say the least and that bad start cost head coach Byron Scott his job, However, the Hornets have won 13 of their last 17 games to get back in the playoff hunt, so Paul’s injury comes at a bad time.
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New Orleans head coach Jeff Bower recently said that the team had done an MRI on Paul’s knee and it showed that there was more damage than the initial diagnosis, which was just a bruise. There have been various reports that Paul had a meniscus tear, but that has not been confirmed. If Paul does have a meniscus tear he would have to go under the knife and will likely miss one or two months. If that is a case it really hurts the Hornets chances to make the post-season as backup PG Darren Collison is a viable backup but nowhere near the calibur of CP3.
Paul hurt his knee against the Golden State Warriors last Wednesday and re-injured the knee hitting a camera in a game last Friday. Paul has been out for two straight games where the Hornets have gone 1-1 in his absence.
While the injury obviously does not help the Hornets it may not be a disaster, as they have rookie Darren Collison (6.8 ppg 3.2 assists per game) backing Paul up. When Paul misses 8 games with an ankle injury earlier this season Collison stepped up and played well and he has averaged around 15 ppg and 7 assists per game when he starts in place of Paul. In the Hornets game this last Saturday they snapped the Memphis Grizzlies’ 11 game home winning streak and Collison had a great game going for 17 points and dishing out 18 assists.
CP3 has missed 10 games this season and in those games New Orleans has gone 5-5. With Paul out indefinitely he will not be playing in the All Star game in Dallas next weekend.