Hawks wing player DeAndre Bembry’s bad injury luck continued Friday when a MRI revealed a fracture in his right wrist that he suffered during the first regular-season game.
Bembry was scheduled to return to Atlanta after the game against the Charlotte Hornets on Friday and is to be evaluated by team physicians Monday. He said he’s not sure how long he’ll be out.
It’s the second time in a little more than a month that an injury has sidelined Bembry. He suffered what the Hawks said was a strained right triceps during the preseason and returned to practice about three weeks later before playing in three exhibition games.
Bembry also suffered a personal tragedy last year. His younger brother, Adrian, was shot and killed in Charlotte two weeks before the Hawks selected him with the 21st pick in the draft.
“I’m feeling like I can’t get a break right now,” Bembry said. “It’s always something. What happened last year going through that with my family. Then my summer with the torn muscle. And now it’s this. I feel like that strongest soldiers get the strongest battle. Luckily it’s nothing too serious. Take a few weeks off, however long it is, and try to get back.”
Bembry said he suffered the injury while bracing his fall during the season opener against the Mavericks on Wednesday, but continued to play. The wrist was hurting after the game and, by Friday morning, Bembry said he realized something was seriously wrong.
“I knew it was something, but I didn’t think it would be that serious,” he said. “I would definitely say I’m somewhat of a tough guy. I probably tried to act like it wasn’t nothing even though it was something. I just tried to push through it.”
Bembry’s injury is a blow to the Hawks’ depth on the wing. The Hawks plan for Bembry to play a major role this season after he played only 38 games and 371 minutes as a rookie.
The options at the wing positions behind starters Kent Bazemore and Taurean Prince include Marco Belinelli, Luke Babbitt, Nicolas Brussino and Tyler Dorsey.
Against the Mavericks, Belinelli played 26 minutes, Bembry 18, and Babbitt nine. Dorsey was on the active roster for that game but didn’t play. Brussino was active against the Hornets after he was inactive for the Mavericks game.
During Bembry’s limited playing time as a rookie and during the most recent summer league performance, he showed promise as a playmaking wing and good defender. Before the season Bembry said he believes he’s “the best wing defender on the team.”
Coach Mike Budenholzer said Bembry’s defensive effort stood out during the coaching staff’s video review of the Mavericks game Wednesday.
“He’s a guy that can impact the game on the defensive end and he’s improving offensively,” Budenholzer said. “(Injuries) are part of an NBA career, unfortunately. We’ll see what the doctors say on Monday and hopefully he’ll be back shortly and continue to have a good year.”