Raptors’ Jakob Poeltl had surgery on his left pinkie and could miss the rest of the 2023-24 season

Jakob Poeltl Raptors pic
Jakob Poeltl Raptors pic

At 23-39 this season, the Toronto Raptors are currently 12th in the Eastern Conference. That is the 7th worst record in the NBA in 2023-24. After a loss on Tuesday to the Pelicans, the Raptors have just 20 games left in the regular season. On Sunday, starting center Jakob Poeltl had to leave the game early vs. the Hornets. 

The 28-year-old did not return as he reportedly tore a ligament in his left pinkie finger. Poeltl has surgery on Tuesday and is in real danger of missing the final 20 games of Toronto’s regular season. Not ideal for the Raptors after they just lost all-star forward Scottie Barnes to a fracture in his left hand. Barnes also needed surgery. Now, Toronto is without two of their five starters for likely the rest of the 2023-24 season.

Jakob Poeltl is out indefinitely for the Toronto Raptors with a torn ligament in his left pinkie

In 2022-23, the Spurs traded Jakob Poeltl to the Raptors at the deadline. He played five seasons in San Antonio. However, Poeltl was returning to a familiar place. The Austrian was the 9th pick in the 2016 Draft by Toronto. His first two seasons were played for the Raptors before he landed with the Spurs. After being traded back to the Raptors, Poeltl started 25 of their 26 final games in 2022-23.

After his injury on Sunday, the big man is out for the rest of the 2023-24 season. Poeltl has missed 12 games for the Raptors already. That number will be 32 if he doesn’t play another game. The veteran center has started all 50 games he’s played for Toronto in 2023-24. He’s averaging (11.1) points, (8.6) rebounds, (2.5) assists, and (1.5) blocks per game. Toronto will miss his production but they do have a capable backup who can replace Poeltl.

At the deadline in 2023-24, the Raptors made a trade with the Jazz or Kelly Olynyk and Ochai Agbaji. Olynyk is a veteran in the NBA and is now playing for his sixth franchise. Last week, the Raptors signed Olynyk to a contract extension. He was born in Toronto and is now playing for his hometown team. The 32-year-old will see increased minutes with Jakob Poeltl out indefinitely. If they didn’t have Olynyk, the Raptors would be in a difficult spot.

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