Hawks Report: John Collins could miss 4-6 weeks with finger injury

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The Hawks are battling every night as they try to climb up the Eastern Conference standings, but they might be without their No. 2 going forward. John Collins’ right ring finger looks twice its size, and he can’t straighten or bend it. If you haven’t seen it… I must give a fair warning if you have a weak stomach.

Collins has played through injuries in the past, specifically sprained fingers but never this severe. The injury could potentially keep Collins out 4-6 weeks, depending on what the team decides. According to Chris Kirschner, the best-case scenario would be for JC to miss two to three weeks.

Deepak Chona, an orthopedic surgeon at Stanford University and the founder of SportsMedAnalytics, said Collins has a boutonnière deformity on his ring finger after examining an image provided to The Athletic. It’s related to a sprain but involves the structures that hold the tendons in place, so, essentially the person has trouble straightening the middle joint of the finger. It’s generally treated with the use of a splint full time, ranging from four to six weeks, followed by part-time use of the splint for another few weeks until the joint is able to straighten on its own. Surgery is needed in special cases, for instance, if the bone underneath the tendon is fractured, but that’s not common.

Chona said if Collins continues to play through this injury, his finger will not be able to undergo any meaningful healing, even over the course of several weeks, because the treatment requires the finger to be immobilized in a splint for the tissue to heal. The best-case scenario would be to hope for minimal partial healing in about two to three weeks and moderate improvement in his shooting with Collins becoming used to his shooting hand being compromised.

With every game a must-win for the Hawks down the stretch, missing Collins would be a massive obstacle to get around. However, given Atlanta’s streaky play in recent weeks, it might be best to let him heal up in time for the postseason.



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