Charlotte’s slim chances against the Miami Heat may have faded to nothing in the first quarter on Sunday.
That’s when, with just more than a couple minutes left in the first quarter, he suffered a strained plantar fascia of the left foot while moving into position to help defensively on a drive. When it happened Jefferson went straight to the bench and soon after to the locker room. The plantar fascia is the connective tissue that runs along the bottom of the foot, to strain it is to stretch it out.
The injury hurts. A lot.
So Jefferson got two injections in his foot to kill the pain just so he could play through it, reports Michael Wallace of ESPN. One right after it happened, one at the half. Then Jefferson was seen leaving the arena in a walking boot.
But he’s going to play through it, as best he can, Wallace reports.
“I really don’t know all the details, but it’s just something I’ve got to play through,” Jefferson said. “I don’t like needles, so it was very uncomfortable for me. I got one right when it happened. From a scale from 1-to-10, it [the pain] was probably a 6. Then I got one at halftime and it felt a lot better in the third quarter. We’re just hoping to keep it at that level going into Wednesday.”
Jefferson finished with 18 points and 10 rebounds, but he moved gingerly after the injury and was never quite the same.
We’ll see how he plays Wednesday in Game 2, but this is bad for Charlotte — they have no margin for error against the Heat. Charlotte needs to play a perfect game just to get a win in this series.
And they can’t do that if Jefferson’s not right. And it doesn’t sound like he’ll be right for a while.