Milwaukee — Rookie Jabari Parker will miss the rest of the season after tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee, dealing a huge blow to the rebuilding Milwaukee Bucks.
The team said Parker will have surgery after tests revealed the extent of the injury. The second overall pick in this year's draft was flown back to Milwaukee after getting hurt in the third quarter of a 96-94 win Monday night over Phoenix.
The 19-year-old Parker was injured when he took an awkward step before colliding with the Suns' P.J. Tucker.
"Sending one up for the young homie (Jabari Parker) for a speedy recovery!" Bucks forward John Henson posted Wednesday morning on Twitter.
Under new ownership seeking a new arena, Milwaukee was off to a good start under new coach Jason Kidd. The Bucks, who won 15 games all of last season, are 13-12.
Parker averaged 12.3 points and 5.5 rebounds per game this year. The one-and-done star at Duke started his professional career not far from his hometown of Chicago after getting drafted by Milwaukee in June.
The polished forward displayed a poised, unselfish demeanor off the court that quickly commanded respect. He was just the kind of talented, well-rounded player needed by a franchise that had finished above .500 just once since 2003-04.
New York investment firm executives Marc Lasry and Wesley Edens bought the team in April from former U.S. Sen. Herb Kohl, ushering in a new era and clear rebuilding strategy for the future. They jettisoned former coach Larry Drew in favor of Kidd soon after drafting Parker.
The Bucks showed life and energy with the ball in Kidd's offense. They'll have to press on the rest of the season without a promising player considered to be a team cornerstone.
"Tough break but (Parker) will come back stronger and hungrier. Please join me in wishing him a speedy recovery," Lasry's son, Bucks executive Alexander Lasry, wrote on Twitter.