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Caja Laboral loses Splitter to ankle injury
February 23, 2010
Caja Laboral must try to preserve its five-year streak in the Quarterfinal Playoffs without the services of two-time All-Euroleague center Tiago Splitter, the competition's fourth-ranked player this season, who will miss at least the next two weeks of the Top 16 with an ankle injury. Splitter (212, 25) missed Game 2 of the Top 16 and had to sit out the team's semifinal in last weekend's Spanish King's Cup due to pain in his left ankle. Caja Laboral announced Monday that its doctors say Splitter must rest at least two weeks while he undergoes treatmeant on the ankle. Splitter is Caja Laboral's second-best scorer and top rebounder this season, with averages of 13.4 points and 6 boards, while ranking fourth among all Euroleague players in with a performance index rating average of 17.3 per game. Splitter is also hitting a career-high 74.5% of his free throws (41 for 55) this season, ranking fifth in shots made from the foul line. His injury comes at a tough moment for Caja Laboral, which is 1-2 in Group H and faces a do-or-die road game at second-place Khimki Moscow Region on Thursday. If undefeated Olympiacos defeats as-yet winless Cibona on Wednesday, Caja Laboral must win at Khimki or be eliminated from the Quarterfinal Playoffs, which has not happened in the previous five-year history of that phase.
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