Portland Trail Blazers forward/center Joel Freeland suffered a right knee injury during the first quarter of Portland's Tuesday night game against the Oklahoma City Thunder at the Moda Center.
Freeland's leg appeared to give as he fought for rebounding position on the defensive end. He immediately fell to the court in clear pain, grabbing his right leg and motioning to the bench for help. The British big man was helped off the court and did not put any pressure on his right leg.
The Blazers announced just before halftime that Freeland had suffered a right knee injury and that he would not return to the game, but they did not include any additional specifics.
Update: The Blazers announced after the game that Freeland will be sidelined for four-to-eight weeks with a right MCL sprain.
A four-week absence would sideline Freeland for Portland's next 13 games. An eight-week absence would sideline Freeland for 27 games, and it would put his return date shortly before the end of the regular season.
Blazers coach Terry Stotts will turn to Meyers Leonard and Thomas Robinson in Freeland's absence.
LaMarcus Aldridge had this to say about Freeland's injury during his post-game session (before the diagnosis was made public).
"That's tough. He's definitely grown into his role this year. Being that back-up center, blocking shots, clogging the paint, being great for us. If he's out, we have to have Meyers step up and be in that role. ... [Freeland] was like, 'No, I'm done [for the night].' He thought it was pretty serious but you never know."
Freeland, 27, is in his second season with the Blazers after playing professionally in Spain for a number of years. He is averaging 3.4 points and 4 rebounds in 14.1 minutes per game this season.
Further updates will be posted when available.
-- Ben Golliver | email@example.com | Twitter