CHICAGO (AFP) – Milwaukee Bucks forward Nikola Mirotic has suffered a broken left thumb dealing another blow to the NBA leaders.
The Bucks announced Wednesday that an x-ray and examination by team physician William Raasch revealed the fracture, but did not list a timetable for his return.
The Bucks are already without guard Malcolm Brogdon who is out indefinitely with plantar fasciitis in his right foot.
ESPN and The Athletic each reported Mirotic will miss from two to four weeks, with only three weeks remaining in the NBA season for the Bucks.
At best, the 28-year-old Montenegro-born Spaniard would return in time to be available for Milwaukee’s last four regular-season games.
At worst, he would miss the start of the playoffs, which begin April 13.
Milwaukee is already ensured a playoff place. The Eastern Conference-leading Bucks are 53-18, three games ahead of the Toronto Raptors for the best record in the NBA – and a home-court edge throughout the playoffs – with 11 games remaining.
Mirotic, who was acquired from New Orleans in a February 7 trade, has averaged 11.6 points, 5.4 rebounds and 1.4 assists in 14 games for the Bucks, who are 10-4 with him in the lineup.
For the full season, Mirotic is averaging a career-high 15.6 points plus 4.5 rebounds and 3.2 assists. He spent his first four NBA seasons with Chicago until a trade to New Orleans last year.