Reggie Jackson's howl suggests more than simple sprain
Detroit — From the loud yell he let out while writhing in pain on the court, it was clear almost immediately that Reggie Jackson was hurt.
In the third quarter of Tuesday’s win over the Indiana Pacers, Jackson was driving to the basket threw a pass but landed on Pacers center Myles Turner’s foot. Jackson severely twisted his right ankle and stayed down on the court, unable to get up. He was helped to the locker room but couldn’t put any weight on the foot.
Coach Stan Van Gundy didn’t have a detailed diagnosis but from replays, it looks to be more serious than a simple sprain.
“Right now, the X-rays were negative; he’s got an ankle sprain,” Van Gundy said. “We’ll get an MRI and see (Wednesday) where we are.”
Ish Smith played the final 17 minutes of the game and likely will be the starter for Thursday’s game at Orlando. Smith played the first 20 games of last season, when Jackson was returning from a platelet-rich plasma injection in his left knee; after Jackson returned, he never got back to his usual form.
As for the rotation who plays behind Smith — Langston Galloway or two-way guard Dwight Buycks — Van Gundy was noncommittal: “We’ll see as it goes.”
Before the injury, Jackson was having one of his best all-around games of the season, with eight points and 13 assists. He only attempted one shot in the first quarter, but had seven assists and helped kick-start the Pistons’ best quarter of the season, with 40 points.
“He was unbelievable. What did he have in the first quarter, seven assists?” Van Gundy said. “11 at the half? 13 in 21 minutes? Incredible. He played great; 13 assists and one turnover — that’s pretty damn good.”
The Pistons will have to move forward without Jackson, which will be tough, given how he’s bounced back from the knee injury and had some good games this year.
“I saw his ankle when he was hopping off and it looked swollen,” said Tobias Harris, who had 30 points. “He was playing such a good game up until that. So we’ll just try to get healthy and be ready when he’s ready to come back.”