Miami Heat big man Bam Adebayo suffered a torn UCL in his right thumb during the team’s game against the Denver Nuggets on Nov. 29 and will undergo surgery this weekend, the team announced.
Adebayo was seen grabbing at his right thumb/hand throughout that game, but it’s unclear when or how he suffered the injury.
While the Heat say a timetable on Adebayo’s return will be provided post-surgery, the expected timeline on a return to play is reportedly four-to-six weeks, according to Adrian Wojnarowski.
The average time lost for in-season surgery to repair a torn UCL of the thumb is 26 games, or around seven weeks, per injury analyst Jeff Stotts of InStreetClothes.com, who also notes that Chris Paul and Marcus Smart returned the quickest from this injury, missing 39 days (14 games) and 44 days (15 games), respectively.
This season, Adebayo is averaging 18.7 points, 10.2 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.1 steals per game in 18 games (32.9 minutes per game).
Without the 24-year-old, Dewayne Dedmon will likely move from the bench into the starting lineup.
The team could also use P.J. Tucker as a small-ball center and rookie Omer Yurtseven may have an opportunity to get some minutes in the rotation.