If there's one thing that can slow down the Duke Blue Devils, it's injuries.
That came to fruition on Tuesday night, when senior forward Ryan Kelly had to exit his team's 68-40 win over Clemson in the first half with an injury to his foot. ESPN's Andy Katz had the latest on the medical reports after the game:
UPDATE: Saturday, March 2 at 5:16 p.m. ET by Alex Ballentine
Seth Davis of CBS Sports has reported that Kelly will make his return in Saturday night's game against the Miami Hurricanes.
Seth Davis @SethDavisHoops
Word from Duke is official: Ryan Kelly will play vs Miami.3/2/2013, 9:52:01 PM
---End of Update---
UPDATE: Friday, March 1 at 9:28 p.m. ET by Ian Hanford
According to CBS' Jeff Goodman, Ryan Kelly is leaning towards a return versus Miami on Saturday after missing the Blue Devils' last 13 games:
Jeff Goodman @GoodmanESPN
Not 100 percent, but hearing that Duke's Ryan Kelly is leaning towards returning tomorrow against Miami - source told CBSSports.3/2/2013, 1:42:17 AM
---End of update---
UPDATE: Wednesday, Jan. 9 at 6:30 p.m. ET by Ben Chodos
No. 1 Duke will have to find a way to continue winning without Ryan Kelly for a while.
Duke Men's Hoops reported the following on the forward's condition:
The Blue Devils are currently 15-0 and will take the court next in a showdown with No. 20 North Carolina State.
---End of Update---
Kelly's had a brilliant start to the season, shooting 50 percent from behind the three-point line while averaging 13.5 points and 5.4 rebounds for the No. 1 team in the country. The 6'11" forward has drawn NBA comparisons to both Ryan Anderson and Matt Bonner, due to his ability to stretch the floor from the outside.
He'll have more tests on Wednesday, when coach Mike Krzyzewski and his staff will know more about the extent of the injury and if reserves Josh Hairston and Amile Jefferson need to be ready to step into a more significant role.
This is the same foot Kelly injured last season, and as College Basketball Talk reported following the game, it's the same foot that caused him to miss games during the ACC and NCAA tournaments.
Kelly is really coming into his own during his senior season, and this would be a big blow to both his NBA prospects and Duke's depth as it hits the big part of its conference schedule. No. 20 North Carolina State is on the schedule this Saturday, and would be a bigger challenge if Kelly can't go.
We'll continue to monitor his status going forward, and after the test results come out on Wednesday we should know more about when the three-point marksman is ready to return to action.
Ethan Grant is a featured columnist for B/R's Breaking News Team.
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