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Maxi Kleber undergoes surgery on torn hamstring

Kleber will likely miss the rest of the season

Dallas Mavericks v Denver Nuggets Photo by Bart Young/NBAE via Getty Images

Mavericks forward Maxi Kleber had surgery on his torn hamstring, the Mavericks announced today. While the Mavericks didn’t address how long Kleber will be out, this surgery likely means Kleber’s season is over.

Sports injury expert Jeff Stotts of said when the Mavericks first announced Kleber’s hamstring tear that surgery would significantly increase the rehab time. Stotts cited Milwaukee Bucks forward Khris Middleton suffering the same injury in 2016 and missing 141 days because of it. That same time frame for Kleber would put his return in May, which likely means his season is over unless the Mavericks make a deep playoff run.

This is a huge loss for the Mavericks. Kleber is the team’s best big man defender and rim protector, and often a versatile switcher who guards the perimeter as well. The Mavericks don’t have another big with his set of skills on the roster, although they’ll try to make do with Christian Wood, Dwight Powell (who is also currently injured, though not as serious), and, gulp, JaVale McGee. Dallas is already experimenting with more minutes for Dorian Finney-Smith at the five, but unfortunately Finney-Smith left the Monday’s loss against Minnesota with an abductor injury, though it likely isn’t serious.

These injuries popping up are exactly the reason there was so much consternation around the Mavericks sluggish start to the season. The Mavericks were playing like a .500 team with a fully healthy roster — what does it look like now? Much like last season, Dallas will have to find a way to battle this adversity to claw back up the standings.

Josh and Kirk recorded a podcast episode the day Kleber’s injury was first announced, so much of the talking points are still relevant. You can listen to that episode here or the embedded player below. Make sure you don’t miss a single episode moving forward, subscribe to the Mavs Moneyball podcast feed on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, Pocketcasts, or Castbox.

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