Greg Stiemsma injury: Pelicans big man to miss 6-8 weeks with MCL sprain

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Pelicans lose their backup center for two months.

The New Orleans Pelicans will be without their backup center for the foreseeable future after the team announced that Greg Stiemsma has sprained his MCL.

Stiemsma suffered the injury against the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday and will be out for six to eight weeks. The big man is averaging 2.0 points, 4.6 rebounds and a 1.0 blocks in just over 15 minutes per game. He has been key in maintaining some semblance of defense for New Orleans when Jason Smith and Anthony Davis head to the bench.

Perhaps more important to the Pelicans' playoff chances is the news emerging Saturday morning that power forward Ryan Anderson will be activated and available for Saturday's game against the Philadelphia 76ers. Anderson hasn't played yet this season with a chipped bone in his toe.

Anderson won't be curing the team's defensive woes in Stiemsma's absence but he will bolster the bench unit, which has been abysmal. Anderson's shooting should provide more space for Tyreke Evans to penetrate. Evans has struggled so far adjusting to his new role and team. If he can jell with Anderson, that should provide the Pelicans with a boost.

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