NBA week 4 recap: Caris LeVert injury and Jimmy Butler trade assessment

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(Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)

A long overdue trade and five overtime games took place in Week 4 of the NBA season, but they are overshadowed by another horrific injury.

It’s not often the lead of a weekly recap of a week in the NBA season would not be a trade that vaults one team into contention and frees another from their wantaway star player. But an unfortunate injury to a rising player in this league on a franchise finally gaining excitement after years in purgatory is impossible to not start with.

Caris LeVert suffered a gruesome leg injury on Nov. 11 in the Brooklyn Nets’ game against the Minnesota Timberwolves. LeVert was contesting a shot with seconds left in the first half of the game when he came down on his ankle very, very wrong. I will withhold linking the video for graphic reasons and do not recommend anybody viewing it.

LeVert was one of the most improved players this season. The Nets, who were originally on Jimmy Butler’s list of three teams he wanted to be traded to, had no intentions of including LeVert in those deals because of his potential, and after multiple foot surgeries that forced him to miss time at the University of Michigan and fall in the 2016 NBA Draft, was fully healthy and looked like an All-Star candidate.

LeVert was averaging 18.1 points, 4.3 rebounds, 3.7 assists and 1.2 steals per game. He formed one of the craftier, more exciting backcourt combinations with Spencer Dinwiddie and D’Angelo Russell, a trio that has guided Brooklyn to a 6-8 start and a legit contender for a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

LeVert nailed a game-winning shot in the final seconds on the road against the Denver Nuggets last week, his second game-winner of the season. The timing of this injury is just gut-wrenching. NBA players were at a loss for words for this injury. He was a joy to watch for everybody in the league and this left teammates of his in tears when it went down.

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We’ll miss you this season, Caris LeVert. Good luck in another recovery, and can’t wait to see the continued improvement to your game when you return.

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