George Breaks Leg During Scrimmage

For the first time since professional players began representing Team USA in 1992, a tremendous injury was suffered.

During the first scrimmage of the summer for the team, Paul George broke his leg chasing down a layup attempt from James Harden

As he landed following the block attempt, George’s foot hit the bottom of the basket stanchion and the result was an open tibia-fibula fracture in his right leg.

George was carried off the court in a stretcher and the scrimmage was immediately called off, Kevin Durant, among other players, were visually distraught.

“It was difficult to watch the injury that Paul George sustained tonight while representing his country,” NBA commissioner Adam Silver said in a statement. “The thoughts and prayers of all of us at the NBA are with Paul and his family.”

The two-time All-Star was immediately rushed to a Las Vegas hospital and underwent successful surgery to repair the injury.

While there is no official timetable on his return, it is believed the 24-year-old will miss the entire 2014-15 season recovering from the injury.

“We are aware of the injury sustained by Paul George in Friday night’s Team USA game in Las Vegas,”Pacers President of Basketball Operations Larry Bird said in a statement. “And we are obviously greatly concerned. At this time our thoughts and prayers are with Paul. We are still gathering details and will have an updated statement Saturday.”

Along with losing his possible starting position on the American team for the inaugural World Cup of Basketball, George is going to will likely miss his entire fifth season in the NBA.

Since being selected with the 10th overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft, George has appeared in 286 out of a possible 312 regular season games.

Indiana forward Paul George suffered a fractured right leg during the first scrimmage session for Team USA Friday night.

The departure of shooting guard Lance Stephenson in free agency to Charlotte created a void in an offense that was already struggling to score the ball.

The Pacers responded in free agency by signing C.J. Miles and Rodney Stuckey to replace the scoring and perhaps more difficult to replace, rebounding at the shooting guard position.

Stephenson led all shooting guards in rebounding last season at 7.2 per game.

Indiana averaged just 96.7 point per game, the sixth fewest in the league a year ago, as George was often expected to carry the team.

George averaged 21.7 points, 6.8 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.9 steals per game, but shot just 42.4 percent from the field, the second lowest percentage of his career.

A day before suffering his injury, George addressed his role in the offense for next season, telling Yahoo! he believed he needed to average between 25 and 30 points a game.

Paul George is expected to miss the entire 2014-15 season after suffering a fractured leg Friday night in Las Vegas.

Along with his increased scoring, he mentioned he may need more shot attempts, believing he may need to shoot 25 times a game, something he did just three times last year.

To help prepare for another deep run in the post season, as the Pacers have qualified for the Eastern Conference Finals in each of the past two seasons, George wanted to help the United States defend its gold medal in FIBA competition.

The 6-foot-10 forward was one of 18 players invited to try out for the team and was expected to become the starting small forward on the team, with Durant moving to power forward.

The only remaining small forwards in the pool of players are Durant, Gordon Hayward, Chandler Parsons and Kyle Korver while the power forwards are Kenneth Faried and Paul Millsap.

Over 20 years have passed since NBA players were allowed to participate in international competitions and the injury to George marks the first time a player was seriously hurt.

Numerous stars, such as LeBron James, declined an invitation to play this summer to rest and prepare for the following season.

Chicago guard Derrick Rose is using the tournament to play his way back into game shape after appearing in just 10 total games over the past two years for the Bulls.

George now becomes the precautionary tale for the ramifications of representing their country in international competition.

He is expected to be in the hospital for at least the next three days and the entire league is hoping for a speedy recovery.

About Brendan Galella

Brendan Galella founded Shatter the Glass to make the NBA even more accessible to basketball fans. Composing player rankings, team evaluations and intriguing observations, he hopes to turn every reader into a dedicated and educated basketball follower.

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