Raptors’ Fred VanVleet out at least three weeks with thumb injury

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Now the pending signing of Jeremy Lin makes a lot more sense.

Toronto backup point guard Fred VanVleet will be out at least three weeks with a “partial ligament injury” on his left thumb, the team announced Monday. VanVleet will be in a splint and be re-evaluated in three weeks, he could be out longer than that. It is believed he suffered the injury in the second quarter Saturday against the Knicks.

VanVleet is averaging 10.5 points per game and shooting36.6 percent from three this season, mostly off the bench. A Sixth Man of the Year candidate a season ago, his efficiency has dipped this season¬†but he is still a vital part of the Raptors’ second unit.

With VanVleet out, Jeremy Lin will be thrown into the fire of a playoff chase as Kyle Lowry‘s primary backup.