Louisville shot-blocker Gorgui Dieng will reportedly undergo an x-ray on his injured left wrist to gauge the progress of his recovery Wednesday, TheCardinalConnect.com is reporting.
Dieng has been out of action since Nov. 23 when he fell awkwardly on defense against Missouri in the Battle 4 Atlantis, breaking the scaphoid bone in his left wrist. It was initially ruled that he would need four to six weeks to recover. Reports earlier in the month indicated that Louisville’s Jan. 2 game against Providence could be the most likely date for Dieng’s return, but the Cardinals face Kentucky Saturday and would like to have the 6-11 defensive stopper in the lineup.
In Dieng’s absence, Louisville is 6-1, having lost only to the nation’s No. 1 team, Duke. Other than a scare from Illinois State, the Cardinals have had little difficulty on their current six-game winning streak.
Prior to his injury, Dieng was averaging 8.2 points, 8.0 rebounds, and 2.0 blocks per game. If he is able to play Saturday against John Calipari’s Kentucky Wildcats, it will shift much of the burden off of Stephan Van Treese and Zach Price, who would be tabbed with neutralizing freshman frontcourt duo Nerlens Noel and Willy Cauley-Stein.
According to Jeff Goodman of CBSSports.com, Dieng will practice Wednesday, as well.
Tip-off against Kentucky is at 4:00 p.m. ET Saturday.
Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at JohnnyJungle.com, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_
Illinois suffered another blow in what has already turned out to be a brutal season.
Mike Thorne is expected to miss the rest of the season after tearing his meniscus. He reportedly underwent surgery on Monday to repair the injury.
Thorne, a transfer from Charlotte, was starting at center for the Illini and doing a good job of it as well. He was averaging 13.4 points and 8.4 boards, although Illinois has started off the season 3-4.
The reason for that slow start has mainly been those injuries. Tracy Abrams is already out for the season after tearing his achilles, and the Illini training room looked like a M.A.S.H. unit. Kendrick Nunn just returned two games ago from surgery to repair a torn thumb ligament. LeRon Black is still getting back to speed after offseason knee surgery. Jaylon Tate is back after dislocating a finger. Jalen Coleman-Lands was slowed by a stress fracture.
John Groce entered this season on the hot seat, and dealing with all of these injuries certainly isn’t helping his cause.
We talk about a lot of stuff of the podcast today, mainly because a lot of stuff happened since we last spoke with you all.
For starters, we need to discuss the ‘realness’ of Syracuse and Xavier. Are they both truly top 15 teams, or do they just have top 15 resumes? We also dive into Chris Mack’s epic troll-job of Dayton at the Advocare Invitational final.
Other topics we touched on: Whether or not Scott is ever going to apologize to Wayne Selden, Wichita State’s tournament hopes, Texas A&M and whether we’d take Ben Simmons, Kris Dunn or Denzel Valentine today.
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