Monday afternoon, the Oklahoma City Thunder announced that Steven Adams (concussion) will miss tonight's contest vs. the Los Angeles Clippers.
Adams exited during the third quarter of OKC’s 122-118 victory vs. Sacramento after striking his head on the floor with 10:15 remaining in the period. Adams finished his night with six points, and four rebounds in 19 minutes of play.
Steven Adams in the locker room after hitting his head on the floor. Boogie Cousins assisted that fall. https://t.co/8GGEYppqJL— Up The Thunder (@UpTheThunder) January 16, 2017
The 23-year-old center must now successfully complete the league-mandated concussion protocol before a return to action is allowed.
As a reminder, here are the steps involved for a player placed in the NBA’s concussion protocol, per NewsOK:
The return to participation protocol involves several steps of increasing exertion -- from a stationary bike, to jogging, to agility work, to non-contact team drills.
With each step, a player must be symptom free to move to the next step. If a player is not symptom free after a step, he stops until he is symptom free and begins again at the previous step of the protocol (i.e., the last step he passed without any symptoms).
While the final return-to participation decision is to be made by the player’s team physician, the team physician must discuss the return-to-participation process and decision with Dr. Jeffrey Kutcher, the Director of the NBA’s Concussion Program, prior to the player being cleared for full participation in NBA Basketball.
With Adams sidelined, reserve Center Enes Kanter is expected to make his first start of the season. Kanter averages 14.5 pts and 6.7 reb in 21.5 mpg, placing him among the league’s top bench performers.
However, Kanter's matchup will likely pit him against a formidable DeAndre Jordan who is averaging 14.7 ppg, 18 rebs, and two blocks during the Clippers’ six-game winning streak.
Tonight’s MLK showcase will mark the first contest of the season Adams has missed. Through 42 games, Adams is averaging 12 ppg, 7.5 reb, 1.2 stl, and one block per outing. Adams has enjoyed a career-year after signing a four-year $100 million contract extension Oct. 31.
Preliminary reports suggest that Adams may also miss Oklahoma City’s anticipated Wed. night meeting vs. Golden State.
Check back with WTLC for the latest updates on Steven Adams’ injury progression.