Reggie Miller's broken left hand is worse than initial examinations revealed, and the Indiana Pacers star is now expected to miss six to eight weeks.
Miller injured his nonshooting hand in Indiana's preseason finale against Denver on Friday night. Pacers coach Rick Carlisle said after the game that Miller would miss four to six weeks.
Miller was re-examined Saturday, and the report was the latest in a long line of bad news for the Pacers this preseason. Indiana is already without Jermaine O'Neal (strained ligament in left foot), Jeff Foster (hip), Anthony Johnson (broken hand), David Harrison (shoulder) and Jonathan Bender (knee).
O'Neal said Saturday that team doctors have told him he could miss three to four weeks to let his foot heal.
"I don't plan to be out three to four weeks," O'Neal said. "That's just what the doctor says."
The Pacers will need their best player back as soon as possible.
Indiana can probably get by with Stephen Jackson filling in for Miller and Scot Pollard for Foster at center, but as Austin Croshere said, "We don't have anyone else on our team that does all the things Jermaine can do. We'll just have to tread water until these guys get back."
Miller's injury is particularly upsetting to the 39-year-old, who has strongly hinted that this will be his final season.
Miller refused comment after practice on Saturday.
"You know Reggie's frustrated," O'Neal said. "It's a helpless feeling being on the sideline knowing you can't do anything. That's something he doesn't want because he's such a leader on this team and he leads by example."