The Phoenix Suns will be without their star point guard, Eric Bledsoe, for the remainder of the season. The Suns had projected that Bledsoe would be out for six weeks but now extended that timeframe after Bledsoe underwent surgery. Their officials statement is “(Bledsoe’s) prognosis is for a return to full playing status for the start of training camp next fall,” the Suns said in a statement.”
According to Paul Coro of AZCentral Sports:
Bledsoe, 26, suffered the injury Saturday night on defense when he tried to avoid a screen away from the ball and planted on his left leg. A meniscus repair has a longer recovery than a meniscus removal. Bledsoe is expected to be ready for the start of next season’s training camp.
This season has been a tough one for the Suns who also made news when they fired two assistant coaches Mike Longabardi, who was heading up Phoenix’s defense, and Jerry Sichting, according to ESPN’s Marc Stein:
“It is never easy to make changes to a coaching staff in the middle of a season, but we feel Earl and Nate are ready to take the next steps in their careers and provide some creative ideas to our group,” general manager Ryan McDonough said in a statement. “We thank Mike and Jerry for their contributions. They are both good coaches who made significant contributions to our team winning 87 games over the previous two seasons.”
It will mark the third time that he has missed times with knee surgery. He previously missed time with the Los Angeles Clippers in 2011 and last season with a torn meniscus. Bledsoe is the Suns’ leadings scorer at 20.4 points per game. He’s contributing 6.1 assists, 4.0 rebounds and 2.0 steals per game. And the defense is yielding 1.7 points per 100 possessions fewer when Bledsoe is on the court. While Brandon Knight should be able to increase his usage and help compensate for some of that loss, it’s going to hurt the Suns in an already disappointing season.