Alright, it’s the day after the bad news of Nick Ward’s hairline fracture dropped.
Now let’s start going through what we absolutely do know about this injury.
For starters, Tom Izzo said this will keep out Ward for 3-5 weeks. Here’s how that fits into the rest of the season:
Some quick math on the Nick Ward Injury for those wondering: pic.twitter.com/9Hw22tbHnu— John Kirby (@john_kirby) February 18, 2019
Izzo also said at Monday’s press conference that Ward had surgery on Sunday night.
With Ward’s 15.1 points and 6.6 rebounds per game missing from the lineup, Izzo has to sort through options of how to handle this. On Monday he said rather than pushing Kyle Ahrens and Aaron Henry down to the four, he’ll most likely give looks to seldom-used players Marcus Bingham and Braden Burke.
Tom Izzo brings up Marcus Bingham and Braden Burke as players who could get on the floor with Ward out— Kyle Austin (@kylebaustin) February 18, 2019
This is also the team’s second major blow due to injury as Ward joins Josh Langford, and it will be interesting to see how mentally the team bounces back from this adversity.
Izzo said he found a great resolve among his players when he met with them at 7:30 this morning.— Graham Couch (@Graham_Couch) February 18, 2019
The Langford news, a few weeks ago, took the wind out of them for a minute. We'll see if this is different. Sounds like it might be.
Izzo also remarked how now certainly isn’t the time to look ahead to this weekend’s game against Michigan (who lost to last place, 2-12 Penn State. People forget that).
With Ward having 20 points and Langford adding 14 in the 78-67 win over Rutgers in November, Wednesday’s game has potential to get dicey.