Sidelined Omri Casspi to undergo surgery for torn meniscus

Casspi, 30, has averaged 6.3 points and 3.2 rebounds in 36 games off the bench this season, while shooting 53.4 percent from the field and 34.9 percent from deep.

February 3, 2019 15:34
2 minute read.
MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES’ forward Omri Casspi

MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES’ forward Omri Casspi was dealt some frustrating news when an MRI revealed that the 30-year-old Israeli has a torn meniscus in his right knee that will require surgery. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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Memphis Grizzlies forward Omri Casspi is scheduled to undergo surgery this week after an MRI revealed a meniscus tear in his right knee, the team announced over the weekend. This is unfortunate news for both Casspi and the Grizzlies, as it was originally believed that he was nursing knee soreness.

Casspi, 30, has averaged 6.3 points and 3.2 rebounds in 36 games off the bench this season, while shooting 53.4 percent from the field and 34.9 percent from deep. Not to mention, he’s third on the team in Offensive Rating (112), fifth in PER (16.0), and second in True Shooting Percentage (60.6%).

Stats aside, Casspi has been a reliable bench piece that’s flashed an offensive arsenal that no one saw coming. Though he has not the three-point marksman the club expected, he’s one of the team’s best slashers and finishers in the paint.

The 10-year veteran has appeared in 588 career games, including 145 starts. Prior to this season, Casspi signed a one-year, $2,176,260 guaranteed contract with Memphis.

The Grizzlies will establish a timeline for Casspi’s recovery after he undergoes surgery. The Israel native scored 18 points and pulled down five rebounds January 25 against the Sacramento Kings before his injury and then sat the next three games before the MRI revealed the extent of the damage.

The current situation is nothing new for Casspi, who only last season as a complementary contributor for the Golden State Warriors suffered a sprained ankle and had to be sit for an extended period. That injury forced the Israeli swingman to miss 11 games and the Warriors eventually released him in April, with Casspi failing to fulfill his dream of playing in the playoffs for a team that ultimately won the NBA title. (He did receive a championship ring from Golden State.)

A year earlier, Casspi was part of the blockbuster trade that sent DeMarcus Cousins to New Orleans and he also joined the Pelicans. New Orleans qualified for the playoffs, but Casspi unfortunately could not take part, having already sustained a broken right thumb, and after the season he was released.

Now, the immediate future for Casspi is up in the air, with The Daily Memphian reporting that “a return for the Grizzlies this season seems pretty unlikely. Casspi was quietly having a really nice season, even if the Grizzlies aren’t. Given the team’s situation and Casspi’s expiring contract, I’d imagine that if he’s still on the roster post-deadline, he’d get cut to free up a roster spot.”

Reuters contributed to this report.

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