The Bucks took a hit to their depth this week, as Ekpe Udoh has been unable to practice.
By RYAN KARTJEFS Wisconsin
ST. FRANCIS, Wis. — With rookie guard Doron Lamb and forward Luc Mbah a Moute already sidelined during training camp with injuries, the
Milwaukee Bucks took another hit to their depth this week, as forward/center Ekpe Udoh has been unable to practice since Tuesday's preseason game against Cleveland.
Udoh sustained the left knee sprain when he was attempting to block a shot from Cleveland's Jon Leuer on Tuesday night. As his left knee came down, Udoh said it didn't feel right. It's an injury Bucks coach Scott Skiles said will keep Udoh out anywhere from 10 days to two weeks.
"He knows everything we want done," Skiles said. "So we're not worried about that. It's just kind of losing conditioning and that kind of thing is a setback. … Obviously, we'd rather have him play, but we can't. We'll just have him rehab and get ready to play. … We don't think it's anything serious with Ekpe, but we are very deep there. We're going to play at least two or three games without him, it looks like, and see where it goes. We'd like him ready for opening night."
Udoh said he expects to miss only another week, and with the Bucks frontcourt spending much of training camp competing for minutes, his return could be important to prove he can be effective on the offensive end.
"It's unfortunate," Udoh said. "You can't really control that stuff. I'll just come back and keep it going, I guess."
When asked whether Udoh's injury could affect the competition for time at power forward, Skiles remained confident that Udoh would have a role on this year's team. With his offense still raw, Udoh has been impressive on the other side of the ball.
"He stands out on the defensive end," Skiles said. "He has a definite role. There's no doubt about that. I don't think he needs to be concerned about that."
As for the two other injured players, Skiles said Lamb could return before the end of training camp as he recovers from a left elbow strain.
"I'm not sure yet about Doron," Skiles said. "There's a possibility he might be able to do something later in camp. He's cleared now to run … he's getting up a few shots. He's nowhere near ready yet."
The same, however, can't be said for Mbah a Moute, who will definitely miss the rest of camp, as expected, with a knee injury. Skiles said that his lack of conditioning could put him behind his teammates when he finally does return.