Top NBA Rookie to Miss 2022-23 Season With Foot Injury

One of the top rookie players will have to wait another year to make his NBA debut. The Oklahoma City Thunder announced this week that Chet Holmgren will miss the 2022-23 season due to a Lisfranc injury to his right foot. The injury occurred during the CrawsOver Pro-Am even when Holmgren, the No. 2 overall pick in this year's NBA Draft, was defending LeBron James, according to ESPN. 

"Certainly, we are disappointed for Chet, especially given the excitement he had about getting on the floor with his teammates this season," Thunder general manager Sam Presti said in a statement. "We know Chet has a long career ahead of him within our organization and the Oklahoma City community. One of the things that most impressed us during the process of selecting Chet was his determination and focus. We expect that same tenacity will carry him through this period of time as we work together and support him during his rehabilitation."  

Presti later spoke to reporters and said that he's confident Holmgren will be back strong for the 2023-24 season. "I've talked quite a bit about the role of luck – good fortune and bad luck – and the role that plays in our lives and also in sports," he said. "This is just a great example of getting some bad luck."

"The long-term prognosis is obviously very positive for this," Presti continued. "We've consulted with three of the top foot specialists in the country. Everybody's in agreement that this is a kind of a 'wrong place, wrong time' situation and he's going to make a full recovery."

Holmgren, 20, was drafted by the Thunder after a stellar season at Gonzaga. Last year, Holmgren played in 32 games and averaged 14.1 points, 9.9 rebounds and 3.7 blocks per game as a center. He was named West Coast Conference (WCC) Newcomer of the Year, WCC Defensive Player of the Year and was a consensus second-team All-American. 

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"I'm obviously really disappointed for Chet because he was just having a monster summer," Presti said. "He's been playing with tons of NBA players over the course of the summer and has been getting better and better and better. ...  He's got a great mentality. Obviously, he was disappointed initially and I'm sure he still is, but his spirits are high. He's ready to roll in terms of the rehab and I think he's going to do a really great job with it."