CLEVELAND — “We 48-10 and, if I do miss some time, I know the guys gonna hold it down,” Chris Paul said of his hand, wrapped in a soft cast as he spoke to the media on Saturday.
They will have to hold it down for most — if not all — of the rest of the regular season.
Allie LaForce of TNT broke the news before the game that Paul has a right thumb avulsion fracture and will be re-evaluated in 6-8 weeks.
The playoffs start in seven weeks.
Paul planned to play a couple of minutes for shorthanded Team LeBron — Donovan Mitchell of Team LeBron had to pull out last minute due to a non-COVID upper respiratory infection.
Paul’s thumb was jammed on a pass against the Rockets last Wednesday, causing the injury. While Paul talked to the officials, he got ejected for contact with a referee because the official turned into him.
An avulsion fracture occurs when a strained ligament pulls a little bit of bone off where the two connect, and the ligament disconnects from the bone. It usually does not require surgery. Paul has a long history of hand injuries.
“I mean, I had four hand surgeries in my career. It’s like my hand surgeon is part of my family now,” Paul joked.
The Suns have a 6.5 game lead over the Warriors for the best record in the NBA. Paul believes his team can hold on to that over the final 24 games of the season. A lot of responsibility will fall on Cameron Payne and Aaron Holiday for the coming weeks.
It also would be shocking to see Paul miss any postseason games. Whether he can return before that remains to be seen.