New York Knicks fans waited with bated breath to see if Jalen Brunson could get up and walk on his own when he rolled his ankle late in Friday's game against the Celtics. He gingerly limped off the court and returned to the locker room, making him the second starter to suffer an ankle injury that night.
Mitchell Robinson injured his left ankle (the same as Brunson) in the first half and didn't return to the game. Tom Thibodeau said Robinson had X-rays on his ankle that luckily came back negative. However, he didn't practice on Sunday and is listed as out for Monday's game against Toronto.
Thibodeau added on Sunday that Robinson will be undergoing additional testing on his ankle. That testing unfortunately revealed that the center needs surgery.
Knicks center Mitchell Robinson to undergo left ankle surgery
The good news is that New York has a solid backup center in Isaiah Hartenstein, who's averaging 5.3 points and 5.6 rebounds per game. Jericho Sims has appeared in only nine games this season, but he'll be in Tom Thibodeau's rotation until Mitchell Robinson returns.
Robinson's dealt with injuries in the past. In 2022-23, he played in 59 regular season games due to a couple of different injuries. The season before that, though, he played in a career-high 72 contests.
He's been one of the Knicks' most valuable players in the season's first quarter, averaging 6.2 points and a career-best 10.3 rebounds per game (5.3 offensive and 5.0 defensive). New York's defense has been lackluster over the past week, so it isn't encouraging that the team will be without their defensive anchor for an extended period.
If Robinson is able to return in eight weeks, he'll be back on the court soon after the trade deadline. If it's closer to ten weeks, he'll return after the All-Star break. Hopefully, his recovery goes as smoothly as it can.