Kristaps Porzingis has suffered a torn lateral meniscus in his right knee and will miss the remainder of the first-round series against the Los Angeles Clippers.

The 7-3 center suffered the injury in Game 1 when he played just 20 minutes. He started Games 2 and 3, playing 36 and 38 minutes, but sat out Games 4 and 5.

About an hour after coach Rick Carlisle told reporters that Porzingis was “very doubtful” for Game 6 on Sunday, the team released a statement that read:

The Dallas Mavericks announced today that Kristaps Porzingis has been receiving treatment for a lateral meniscus tear of his right knee and further treatment options are being explored at this time. Porzingis suffered the injury in Game 1 of the 2020 NBA Playoffs.

Porzingis has not been medically cleared to play for the remainder of the Mavericks’ first-round series and will not be available.

In three first-round games (all starts) against the Clippers, Porzingis averaged 23.7 points and 8.7 rebounds in 31.3 minutes per game while shooting 52.5 percent (21-40 FGs) from the field, 52.9 percent (9-17 3FGs) from beyond the arc and 87 percent (20-23 FTs) from the foul line.

In the games that Porzingis has missed in the playoffs, the Mavericks have gone with a smaller lineup, starting 6-foot Trey Burke in the backcourt while moving Tim Hardaway Jr. into a swingman role.

Porzingis averaged 20.4 points and a career-best 9.5 rebounds in 57 games during the regular season.

It was not known if surgery is being considered for Porzingis’ injury.

The Mavericks trail the best-of-seven series against the Clippers 3-2 and must win on Sunday to force a Game 7.

The highlight of Porzingis’ season was the way he exploded late in the season. After starting relatively slow, he hit a wonderful stride starting in February. Over the last 21 games he played, he averaged 26.7 points, 10.5 rebounds, 2.1 blocks and shot 36.8 percent from 3-point range.

Twitter: @ESefko


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