Phoenix Suns guard Leandro Barbosa re-injured his right wrist during the Suns win Sunday over the Minnesota Timberwolves. He initially hurt the wrist while leading his Brazilian National Team to a gold medal in the FIBA Americas Championship tournament this summer.
In an exclusive post-game interview with Bright Side of the Sun Leandro said this about the injury, "It's bad man. They told me I have a cyst on the wrist so it's been tough for me to catch the ball and I got hit in the game so I don't know what's going to happen."
The speedy Brazilian guard only had 6 points in 14 minutes of play in Sunday's game. He was visibly pained by the swollen right wrist.
"I guess it just got worse and worse and now it's bad to the point that I can't catch the ball so it's kind of bad for me," said an unusually somber Barbosa.
Leandro said that the doctors don't think that surgery is an option and that they will give him anti-inflammatory medication.
Barbosa is an important part of the Suns guard rotation averaging about 15 points and 27 minutes per game over the past two seasons. The 2006/07 Sixth Man of the Year is relied on to provide a scoring punch off the bench when paired with second year point guard Goran Dragic. Barbosa is known as one of the fastest players in the game with the ball in his hands and is a very reliable outside shooter.
If Barbosa can't play the Suns would likely use Goran Dragic in more minutes and they also can play backup small forward Jared Dudley more and slide Grant Hill to the shooting guard.
[Note by Phoenix Stan, 11/02/09 12:57 PM MST ]
Update on Barbosa's status as of Monday's practice.
Leandro received treatment today for what the team is officially calling an inflamed wrist. The team trainer said he's expected to play on Tuesday in Miami while Coach Gentry described him as "day-to-day". Gentry felt that Leandro would want to find a way to play.
[Note by Phoenix Stan, 11/03/09 3:40 PM MST ]
Update on Barbosa from Paul Coro in Miami:
Barbosa's ongoing soreness in his right wrist has worsened recently. The injury originally occurred in early September, when Barbosa was hit while in the air on a driving layup and braced his fall with his hands. He was able to play through training camp and preseason but was still bothered by the soreness, especially on his frequent falls.
After a foul on that wrist in the Golden State game, Barbosa had a MRI performed on the wrist. There is a cyst inside it but he was told it is too tiny for surgery. He was fouled again on the wrist in Sunday's Minnesota game.
"Then, it got worse," Barbosa said after today's shootaround, as head athletic trainer Aaron Nelson wrapped the wrist. "The hit was enough to hurt like this.
"We'll see how I feel later. But in a game, I don't think I'll be able to do much."
Barbosa tried passing and catching this morning but it "shocked" his hand. When he took shots, they fell short of the rim. He does not like pain one bit.
"I can barely open my hand," he said. "It's tough. I want to be able to do something when I'm on the court, especially with the right hand."