The Warriors’ Chris Paul will undergo surgery for a broken hand, with no timetable for his return

The Golden State Warriors’ already struggling season took another dark turn on Friday night when Chris Paul suffered a fractured left hand during a narrow win over the Detroit Pistons. Paul will have surgery next week. There is no timetable for his return.

“I’m so sorry for Chris,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said. “I know he’s had surgery a few times before, I think, but maybe that was it, but I saw him holding it and I was immediately worried. I didn’t find out until I got up from the floor. So “I feel terrible for Chris and of course the boys will be ready to play and we’ll have to hold the fort without him.”

Hold the fort without Paul? The warriors’ fortress had already collapsed with him. They’re under .500 and clinging to the West’s final play-in spot. Draymomd Green is still suspended. Jonathan Kuminga is upset about his role. Klay Thompson has to do it cheer yourself up to tackle the downturn in his career.

On Friday, the Warriors needed two 28-footers from Stephen Curry in the final minute and five seconds to earn a home win against the underdog Pistons, who are barely a week removed from a 28-game losing streak.

Paul is no where near what he once was, a common theme in this storied franchise, but he is an important part of this team. He plays about 30 minutes per evening. He closes games. It sounds strange to say this, but at least Paul’s absence along with that of Gary Payton II will make Kerr’s life a little easier by freeing up some space in a crowded rotation.

“Both Brandin (Podziemski) and Cory (Joseph) will be playing more at this point,” Kerr said. “(This) probably puts Moses (Moody) back in the rotation as well because you’re replacing 30 minutes of Chris. So we’re not going to replace all of those minutes with one guy, but we’re probably going to spread them out.”

Moody, who at various points has looked like an up-and-coming guy in Kerr’s rotation, has been taking DNPs of late and has been completely left out of the rotation. He’ll get another chance to solidify something, but Green will come back at some point, and so will Payton.

It seems like a trade is inevitable to clear some of this up, and to be honest, Paul could still be one of the candidates whose contract is expiring. But that’s all for a later date. Right now, Paul is facing surgery and the Warriors are clinging to life.

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