The injury news around the Nets keeps getting comically worse.
First, Lawrence Frank told the beat writers today that Chris Douglas-Roberts, was experiencing “flu like symptoms” and will not be on the team bus down to Philadelphia for tomorrow night’s game against the 76ers.
As explained by Al Iannazzone in the Bergen Record:
The league policy – due to swine flu – is with flu-like symptoms a person has to be isolated for 24 hours, take tests, etc. Frank said they’re not sure if it’s a cold or the flu so Douglas-Roberts stayed back when the team bussed to Philly. There’s a chance he won’t be there tomorrow night.
Even if Douglas-Roberts wants to play through it, if it’s the flu he can’t.
This would leave the Nets with 9 healthy bodies for tomorrow night. Terrence Williams would likely get the call at the 3, while backing up Rafer Alston at PG.
There was also a status update on Devin Harris today, and it’s not looking good. His original 7-10 day prognosis was a wee bit optimistic and he’s now talking a return in two weeks, maybe longer.
As reported by Dave D’Alessandro in the Star-Ledger:
“It could take four weeks to heal,” Devo said. “If I come back in two weeks and I still feel it, I’m going to take the next two weeks. I’m hoping to be back in two weeks. That’s what I’m hoping for.
“We don’t have a date quite in mind. It comes down to when I come back I want to be completely healthy.”
With the way everybody’s injuries are lining, the Devin, Yi Jianlian, Jarvis Hayes and Keyon Dooling could all be returning together before the four game West Coast swing during Thanksgiving week. Granted with the injuries piling up, and the schedule not getting any easier, it’s quite possible the Nets could still be searching for their first win of the season by that point.
This season is officially becoming a nightmare and it’s barely started. I was lucky enough to suffer through a similar situation as a Mets fan this past summer, and trust me, this is not fun. There’s nothing more deflating than losing player after player to injury. And each one of these injuries seems to be so flukey and disconnected, it’s hard to really fault anyone on the team’s training staff, though I’m sure many fans are going to start looking for some kind of scapegoat.
What’s even more disconcerting is the bodies may not be done piling up. Not to be a pessimist, but Eduado Najera, our starting 4 by default right now, hasn’t exactly been the beacon of good health in recent years, and Rafer Alston is now on the wrong side of 30.
I’m trying to find the silver lining in all this right now, but I really can’t. If the Nets are going to build on anything this season, they need guys like Devin, Yi and CDR on the court, logging 30+ minutes a game. Guys like Jarvis Hayes and Keyon Dooling, whoprovide nice depth and veteran leadership, need to get into game action sooner instead of later. The Nets are being forced to play the back of their bench and they’re just not going to win games if this trend continues.
There’s still a lot of basketball season left, but that’s not going to stop teams from feasting on the Nets when they try to get healthy. If the team can’t find a way to gut out a couple of victories over the next two weeks, there’s going to be talk of this being a historically bad season in New Jersey. Even with the promise of a lottery pick and a new billionaire Russian owner, that can’t be good for the long-term needs of this organization.