Florida’s season-long injury report would make even Elijah Price wince (only the “Unbreakable” fans will recognize that obscure reference), but the resilient Gators continue to battle through bumps, bruises and breaks … and win.
They did so again on Saturday, hammering LSU by 22 points, despite a shortened lineup due to an injured Mike Rosario, and the in-game loss of Casey Prather.
After landing awkwardly following a first-half put back, Prather winced and hobbled his way off the court. He would not return, and initial the prognosis for the injury-plagued, but suddenly surging Junior, looked grim.
“The encouraging part is that it is not broken, which is what I was told at halftime — that they thought he had a break,” coach Donovan said of the early speculation.
Though a fracture has been ruled out, a definitive diagnosis has not been made of Prather’s ankle injury.
“I thought he would have gone over on his ankle. It didn’t look like he did, so I don’t know,” Donovan said. “Maybe it’s some kind of strained ligament or tendon.”
After the X-rays came back negative, the focus has turned to a possible high-ankle sprain. With that as a possibility, Donovan acknowledged a potentially extended absence for Prather.
“That is what they are saying right now— a high ankle sprain. Those things are tough to come back from and they’re a long healing process if that’s what it is,” Donovan said.
Though Prather was injured and Rosario sat out with an ankle injury of his own, Gator fans can be encouraged by the surprising return of senior Erik Murphy. After missing the game versus Yale, it was revealed he had a broken rib.
Despite the injury, he has played in conference wins over Georgia and LSU, including 24 minutes against the Tigers.
The Gators get much needed time to rest, and in some cases, recover. Florida’s next games is Thursday, against SEC new comer, Texas A&M, who knocked off Kentucky on Saturday afternoon.