Gonzaga has played their last three games without starting center Przemek Karnowski, a 7-foot-1 mountain of a man that is an effective low-post scorer and an even better rim protector defensively.
And according to head coach Mark Few, Karnowski may not be returning to the court anytime soon. The big man has been dealing with back spasms that don’t seem to be going away.
“He’s not moving,” Few told reporters after the game. “He’s in a lot of pain and it doesn’t seem to be getting much better.”
Gonzaga has not been all that good without Karnowski, having lost to Arizona at home — blowing a 12-point lead in the process — and nearly succumbing to Montana in The Kennel on Tuesday night. For reference, Gonzaga entered the season having lost nine games at home since The Kennel opened in 2004.
Karnowski’s absence was felt against Montana as Martin Breunig, a Washington transfer averaging more than 20 points this season, scored 18 of his 20 points in the second half.
“We’re 2-1 without Przemek and very well could have been 3-0,” Few said. “He’s a huge part of who we are. I think these guys are performing admirably without one of their best, most important players on the floor.”