Magic rookie guard Jalen Suggs is expected to be out an extended amount of time after fracturing his right thumb, coach Jamahl Mosley told reporters.
Suggs suffered the injury in the fourth quarter of Monday’s loss to the 76ers.
“The kid is a fighter,” Mosley said, via Matt Murschel of the Orlando Sentinel. “You love his fight, his resilience, his toughness, his competitive edge … but it’s tough for Jalen in this situation right now. Our guys will keep lifting him, keep him engaged and keep the fight going.”
Suggs was the No. 5 overall pick in the 2021 NBA Draft and is averaging 12.3 points, 3.6 assists and 3.4 rebounds in 22 games. He has started all of them.
“He’s a big part of what we’re trying to build here in Orlando,” center Mo Bamba said. “I’m just wishing him a speedy recovery and I know that he’ll be back.”
Suggs has already experienced more losses with the Magic (4-18), then he did in college and high school combined. So all if it is part of a rebuilding process, something the Magic will try to continue without Suggs, as well as previously injured forward Jonathan Isaac and guards Markelle Fultz and Michael Carter-Williams.
“It’s the next-man-up mentality,” said Mosley. “And guys have got to be willing to step into their roles, play their minutes, play well and with the same intensity that they would if they were playing two minutes or whether they’re playing 20 minutes.”