Melbourne United’s Good Friday victory over the Cairns Taipans has been marred by an injury to Jack White.
White went down with the injury in the third quarter and did not return.
Coach Dean Vickerman said that the injury was a major disappointment, given White’s recent return from another long-term injury.
“You know, he started to look like himself again today,” he said.
“Above the rim, in transition, blocking shots.
“And then Jawai, deflecting him, but it looked like, on the way up, he just ruptured his achilles.
“So we’ll scan it, we’ll do everything, but it’s a pretty significant rupture, I don’t think it’s hanging by too much right now.
“So it’ll be 12 months before he gets back on the floor again.
“Huge loss for us and devastating for him to start his pro career with a couple of big injuries.”
With the loss of White, United must adjust the lineup going forward, starting on Sunday when they head up to Cairns to face the Taipans once again.
Vickerman said the club has options to replace him in the line-up.
“We always look internally,” he said.
“Mason, Barlow, Jo Acuil, they all have the ability to cover that area as they have done while he’s been out.
“So we’ll look at that, and hopefully, we believe that is still able to get us to where we want to get to.”
“And we look at all options if we don’t think that is the answer.
“Right now that is the answer, we look internally and roll with those guys who understand what’s required.”
Scotty Hopson made his return to the floor tonight and finished with 14 points and eight rebounds.
Hopson said he was excited to return to the floor.
“I was excited to get back out there on the floor with the guys today, brush the dust off a little bit,” he said.
“Just trying to do the right things, playing good defence, rebound the basketball, moving it around when I can.
“And when I get an opportunity to score just be really aggressive.
“It felt good to get the victory today.”
Hopson said it was challenging to miss games just as he was hitting top form, but he’s ready to continue to get back to his best.
“It was challenging, seeing all the guys going through it a little bit,” he said.
“But we weathered the storm, we won a few games, our guys showed character.
“For me it was about getting the chance to dissect the way I’ve been playing, the ways I could impact the team coming back/coming forward.
“It gave me a chance to really find my niche within the team and I’m building toward that every day.”