Zaza Pachulia has fractured foot, out at least a month

ST. FRANCIS, Wis. — The

Milwaukee Bucks’ already depleted roster suffered another blow Monday when it was

revealed that center Zaza Pachulia has a fractured bone in his right foot and

will be re-examined in four weeks.

Pachulia suffered the fracture

to his calcaneus or heel bone while coming down on another player’s foot as he was grabbing a rebound in Milwaukee’s loss to Detroit on Dec. 4.

“It could be worse,

right?” Pachulia said. “There was nothing I could do. There was no

control. I landed and stepped on somebody’s foot, rolled my ankle and it

appeared as a fracture.

“Hopefully these four

weeks are going to go nice and smooth. It’s a small fracture, but because of my

weight and size I need to be careful with it and make sure it’s totally healed

before I come back.”

Unlike forward Carlos Delfino’s fractured foot, Pachulia

says his injury won’t require surgery. The veteran center injured his right

Achilles with Atlanta last season and underwent season-ending surgery in March.

Though he was able to play in

17 games this season, Pachulia admitted his Achilles had been “a little

tight” recently.

“I think with this four weeks I’ll be totally done with injuries and I’ll

be back to normal Zaza,” Pachulia said. “For any athlete an injury is

bad news, but with this four weeks, beside my foot I can heal my Achilles as

well and come back real strong. That’s the goal. That’s my mindset.”

Milwaukee’s frontline has been

ravished by injuries, as center Larry Sanders is still out with a thumb injury,

Ekpe Udoh continues to battle right knee and right ankle pain and Pachulia is

now on the shelf.

The Bucks will likely continue

to start John Henson at center with Udoh and Ersan Ilyasova playing at power

forward. Rookie Miroslav Raduljica, who has played sparingly in eight games,

may see his role increased with Pachulia out.

“We just have to play guys

who originally were not part of the rotation,” Bucks coach Larry Drew

said. “Miroslav will more than likely will be seeing minutes.”

Signed as a free agent out of

the Ukrainian SuperLeague in July, Raduljica is a big body who has shown well

in his limited time on the floor. The Serbian center scored a career-high eight

points in nine minutes off the bench in Saturday’s 90-82 loss to Brooklyn.

“I’ve got total trust in all of my guys,” Drew

said. “(Raduljica) is a young guy who doesn’t have playing experience. I

thought he did a good job the other night. He’ll certainly be cast into a

situation now where he’ll have to play some extended minutes.”

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