Memphis Grizzlies point guard Mike Conley will miss three to four weeks with left Achilles tendinitis, the team announced Saturday.
Conley, 28, has missed the last three games, and an exam Friday revealed the injury. The team also announced that center Chris Andersen is out indefinitely with a left shoulder subluxation, after he also missed the past three contests.
Conley is averaging 15.3 points and 6.1 assists for the Grizzlies in 56 games this season and had done his part to keep the team afloat after Marc Gasol’s season-ending injury in February. Andersen, 37, was acquired at the trade deadline as Memphis reshuffled its roster after losing its star center, dealing away Courtney Lee and Jeff Green in separate moves. The Grizzlies and head coach Dave Joerger are 39–26 and fifth in the Western Conference, and 9–4 since Gasol was ruled out for the season with a broken foot.
The injuries are the latest in a long slew of them for the Grizzlies, who have just nine healthy players on their roster, including point guard Briante Weber, who just signed a 10-day contract with the team. Due to the injury situation, point guard Mario Chalmers was waived after rupturing his Achilles earlier in the week. With both Conley and Chalmers out, Weber, a 23-year-old rookie, made his NBA debut and played 40 minutes.
The Grizzlies are likely to seek the league’s hardship exception, which would allow them to add another player to their roster. The team added Weber under the injury exception earlier in the week, and with Chalmers waived and Weber now occupying the 15th spot on the team, the Grizzlies could apply again as long as their current situation stays the same.
Yahoo’s Shams Charania reports the Grizzlies plan to sign guard Ray McCallum, last with the Spurs, and center Alex Stepheson, whose 10-day contract with the Clippers just expired, using injury exceptions.
To receive the exception, a team must have three players on its roster miss at least three consecutive games each due to injury or illness, in addition to a fourth player unable to perform. The hardship waiver is granted by commissioner’s office. The team is currently without Conley, Andersen, Gasol, Zach Randolph (knee) and Brandan Wright (MCL) in addition to second-year guard Jordan Adams, who played just two games at the beginning of the season before injuring his knee.
Memphis travels to Atlanta to face the Hawks on Saturday night.