Raptors' Precious Achiuwa out indefinitely with ankle injury

Toronto Raptors forward Precious Achiuwa is out indefinitely after partially tearing ligaments in his ankle Wednesday night against the Houston Rockets. (Reuters)

Toronto Raptors forward Precious Achiuwa is out indefinitely after suffering partial ligament tears in his right ankle during Wednesday’s 116-109 win over the Houston Rockets, the team announced Thursday.

Achiuwa, 23, sustained the injury early in the fourth quarter of Wednesday’s contest against Houston. Following a precarious fall after attempting a dunk, the Nigerian looked to have twisted his ankle. Subsequently, Achiuwa limped to the Raptors’ bench and could not walk to the locker under his own power, requiring team personnel to assist him.

According to TSN's Josh Lewenberg, Achiuwa underwent an MRI after the game and has to wear a walking boot for the next 10 days. There is no timetable for his return.

The third-year forward is averaging 8.8 points, seven rebounds and 1.3 assists in 20.4 minutes per game of action in 12 games this season.

Achiuwa is the latest Raptor to succumb to the injury bug. Pascal Siakam, 28, was initially ruled out for two weeks following a strain of the right abductor muscle he sustained on November 6 against the Mavericks. With the two big men sidelined for the foreseeable future, Toronto is now bereft of depth in their frontcourt. In their absence, rookie Christan Koloko and longtime Raptor Chris Boucher will be expected to shoulder more minutes and responsibility.

The injury to Achiuwa, however, sheds light on how thin Toronto’s bench is. Not only was the 23-year-old the second leading scorer off the bench for the Raptors, but he averaged the most minutes amongst the reserves, as well. The onus will fall on others to step up; veterans Otto Porter Jr. and Thaddeus Young will earn larger roles and assuage the scoring loss that will be experienced with the injury to Achiuwa.

Porter Jr., particularly, is coming off his best game as a Raptor, putting up 14 points and six rebounds during Wednesday’s win against the Rockets.

Toronto kicks off its three-game road trip on Friday against the Oklahoma City Thunder.

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