The Charlotte Bobcats are in the middle of another dreadful season, and things may have gotten worse Saturday night.
UPDATE: Monday, December 31 at 2:20 p.m. ET by Alex Kay
No Michael Kidd-Gilchrist for Bobcats today, after he was poked in the eye Saturday. Jeff Taylor to start at small forward.— Rick Bonnell (@rick_bonnell) December 31, 2012
The No. 2 overall pick was able to return to the game after the initial injury, but may have suffered a setback over the weekend. We'll keep you updated right here when we know more.
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UPDATE: Saturday, December 29 at 9:00 p.m. ET by Ian Hanford
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According to the Bobcats' vice president of communications, B.J. Evans, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist suffered a head injury versus the New Orleans Hornets Saturday night:
If things were bad for Charlotte, they just got much worse. Kidd-Gilchrist's hustle and defense-first mentality has transitioned well from college to the NBA, and he's been one of the team's best players overall.
Charlotte entered Saturday night's game in the middle of a 17-game losing streak, putting their record at 7-22 overall. The Bobcats are a young team, but their lack of success is alarming no matter how you cut it.
Kidd-Gilchrist has offered some form of optimism, though. He's not the most polished offensive player, but he's still averaging 10.6 points per game. When you consider that he's averaging over 6.2 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 1.3 blocks and nearly one steal per game, you realize how valuable he can be.
If the rookie is out of the lineup, Reggie Williams will have to take over at small forward. He's averaging just over four points per game, but he's nowhere near the all-around presence that Kidd-Gilchrist is at this point.
Charlotte needs motivated players right now, and Kidd-Gilchrist definitely brings that to the table. He has a motor that doesn't quit, and he's always willing to do the little things to help his team win the game.
The Bobcats are going to struggle even if this injury doesn't keep him off the floor for long, but it's important the he is healthy and gelling with his teammates as much as possible.
Stay tuned for updates regarding Kidd-Gilchrist's head injury.