A team that might have had a chance to beat the Warriors come playoff time lost one of their best players Monday night when Portland Trail Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic suffered a gruesome leg injury during a game against the Brooklyn Nets.
On Tuesday in Memphis, Warriors coach Steve Kerr spent some time discussing the injury and voicing his support for the 24-year-old budding star.
"Yeah, I just feel so bad for Jusuf," Kerr told the media. "For anybody to get injured is so brutal, but in particular, a guy who is having a career year. A team that's having a fantastic season.
"I was watching the game, and I saw it happen. Saw all the players on Portland and Terry [Stotts, the Blazers' coach] and seeing everybody's -- the look on their faces was just devastated.
"It's part of this game, I know, but yeah all of us were talking about it today here at practice, and we all send Jusuf our wishes for a full recovery. It's just tough to see."
Nurkic suffered a fractured left tibia and fibula. He underwent surgery Tuesday and is expected to make a full recovery.
The Blazers currently sit third in the Western Conference but have been hit hard by injuries of late. Star guard CJ McCollum hasn't played in over a week after suffering a knee strain, and Portland now will enter the NBA playoffs without Nurkic, who was having a stellar season, averaging a career high in points (15.6), rebounds (10.4) and assists (3.2).