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News » Miles to have surgery to repair thumb ligament

Miles to have surgery to repair thumb ligament

Miles to have surgery to repair thumb ligament LONDON ? Heading into his fourth NBA season, much was looking up for swingman C.J. Miles. His body was better than it's ever been, and his shot was falling, evidenced by a 5-for-7 effort from the field, including 2-for-2 from 3-point range, in the Jazz's preseason-opening win over Denver last Thursday. Then he flew overseas, and all turned sour.

Miles ? one of the few Jazz players actually looking forward to doing some sightseeing both here in London and later this week in Madrid, Spain ? ruptured a ligament in the thumb on his left, shooting hand during practice Monday at The O2 Arena. Miles will need surgery, Jazz general manager Kevin O'Connor said shortly after team doctor Dr. Lyle Mason examined the thumb. The extent of the injury was immediately evident, O'Connor added. "Certainly he worked his tail off to get himself in really good shape. I think we saw that so far in the week-and-a-half we've had (since training camp opened)," O'Connor said. "But, you know, injuries are a part of the game, and if we start feeling sorry for ourselves then we're making a mistake." The club had no precise timetable for how long he'll be out, but O'Connor said Miles may miss the opening of the regular season. The Jazz ? in London to play Chicago tonight in a preseason game that is part of the NBA's EuropeLive 2009 tour ? begin their 2009-10 season Oct. 28 vs. the Denver Nuggets. "Best guesstimate ... he won't be ready for the start of the season. Or it could be more. Don't know," O'Connor said. Miles injured the thumb during a scrimmage, rupturing the tendon as he tried to brace himself from a fall while going after a loose ball. The 22-year-old returned home to the United States on a commercial flight later Monday and will soon undergo surgery there. Through a team spokesman, he declined comment on the injury. Miles was the Jazz's starter at small forward for every game in which he played last regular season. The Jazz have been considering using him off the bench this season, though, and have been playing him at both shooting guard and small forward. In any event, he'd likely be a part of coach Jerry Sloan's regular rotation. O'Connor said he did not know what impact the injury would have on the makeup of the roster of the Jazz , a team that lost 149 man games to injury and illness last season. "We're over here, so it's difficult to react," he said. "But ... I don't know what we'll do as far as that goes." Utah currently has 13 players under contract, and can sign up to two more. The count of 13 includes veteran swingman Matt Harpring, who did not make the trip to Europe and may not play at all this season due to chronic knee and ankle injuries. The loss of Miles really is a compounding blow for the Jazz , as it was just prior to practice Monday that Sloan was suggesting that avoiding injuries would be critical to the club's season. "Hopefully we can stay healthier than what we did last year," he said mere minutes before Miles went down without any hope for returning early in the foreseeable future. "That always happens to teams ? that you have any of your key players out for a period of time," Sloan added. "But it takes a while for them to mesh back together after they come back." Backup shooting guard Kyle Korver and reserve center Kyrylo Fesenko, meanwhile, both are being called "questionable" by the Jazz for today's game. Korver has been bothered for much of training camp by inflammation in his left knee. He took part in the early part of practice Monday, including stretching drills, but not the rest. Fesenko sprained his left heel, which was stepped on. e-mail:

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Added: October 7, 2009


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