UPDATED 12/12/2013 6:52 p.m.
Golden State Warriors reserve center Jermaine O’Neal missed Wednesday night’s win at Oracle Arena over the Dallas Mavericks with a sprained wrist and according to a report saw a specialist Thursday and he will have surgery to repair a torn ligament.
According to CSNBayArea.com, O’Neal is in so much pain he can’t perform even ordinary tasks with his right hand, much less anything involving a basketball. A timetable for his return will be established after his surgery, the team announced (h/t CBSSports.com)
In 17 games for the Warriors this season, O’Neal is averaged 18.6 minutes per game with 6.2 points and 4.5 rebounds.
In his 18th year, the 35-year-old was one of the many players who went directly from high school to the NBA in the mid-1990s. O’Neal was taken as a 17-year-old with the 17th overall pick in 1996 by the Portland Trail Blazers.
He developed into a six-time All-Star with the Indiana Pacers in the early 21st century and has bounced around the last five seasons with the Raptors, Celtics, Suns and now the Warriors.
But it’s not necessarily what he does on the court that has had an impact on Golden State early this season. O’Neal is credited with an impassioned halftime address to his teammates at halftime of the Warriors’ dramatic comeback victory over Toronto on Dec. 3.
Surgery would wipe out most of the season for O’Neal, but might be the best long-term option. But he might need to opt for the drastic solution since treatment alone doesn’t seem to be doing anything to solve the problem.
The Warriors added big man Hilton Armstrong to the roster on Wednesday and he played seven minutes against Dallas. He was signed as a free agent and had been playing for Golden State’s NBA Development League affiliate in Santa Cruz.