Domantas Sabonis’ status for Pacers ahead of crucial playoff bid, per Nate Bjorkgren
The Indiana Pacers and head coach Nate Bjorkgren will be bracing for a thinner frontline in their upcoming games. This is after his starting bigs Domantas Sabonis and Myles Turner were scratched off against the San Antonio Spurs at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on Monday.
Making matters worse was the fact that the already shorthanded Pacers also lost backup center Goga Bitadze mid-game.
Sounds like Goga got banged up earlier in the game. He tried to play through it, Bjorkgren had to yank him.
Turner and Sabonis injuries both popped up this morning after yesterday’s game. Turner out indefinitely. Bjorkgren isn’t sure how much time Domas will miss.
— Tony East (@TEastNBA) April 20, 2021
Domantas Sabonis, who got his second straight All-Star nod this season, sat the second game of a back-to-back due to back soreness. Myles Turner. on the other hand, has been ruled out indefinitely after an MRI revealed a partial tear of a plantar plate in his right big toe. It’s unclear if he will undergo surgery or not, but he will definitely miss a lot of time if he opts to take that route.
Bitadze took their place and started for the Pacers versus the Spurs, but he also got hurt. The injury bug just won’t leave Indy’s frontline alone. Without their towering bigs to patrol the paint, Indiana lost to the Spurs at home, 109-94. Bitadze did an admirable job producing seven points, nine boards, and five rejections in 23 minutes before Bjorkgren pulled him out of the ball game to avoid further damage.
Indiana now lost its third straight game, as they dropped to ninth in the East with a 26-31 slate. They’ve gone 5-5 in their last 10 outings and can’t risk losing their spot in the playoff play-in tournament. Teams like the Chicago Bulls, Washington Wizards and Toronto Raptors are hot in their trail and have established winning streaks of their own.
Nate Bjorkgren will definitely need his bigs back healthy for the Pacers to have a chance to secure a playoff berth.