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Butler’s Jalen Thomas out indefinitely with heart issue

Georgia State v Gonzaga

PORTLAND, OREGON - MARCH 17: Jalen Thomas #25 of the Georgia State Panthers reacts against the Gonzaga Bulldogs during the second half in the first round game of the 2022 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament at Moda Center on March 17, 2022 in Portland, Oregon. (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)

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INDIANAPOLIS -- Butler forward-center Jalen Thomas will be out indefinitely after being diagnosed with a pulmonary embolism.

Team officials said the fourth-year player is being treated by the team’s medical staff and local specialists. Doctors believe Thomas can make a full recovery with medication.

The Cleveland Clinic website describes the condition as a blood clot in the lung that restricts blood flow and lowers oxygen levels in the lungs while increasing blood pressure in pulmonary arteries.

While Thomas is expected to participate in non-contact work and conditioning during his recovery, the Bulldogs don’t expect Thomas to play any sooner than December.

The 6-foot-10, 230-pound Thomas transferred to Butler in May after playing three seasons at Georgia State, where he finished fifth on the school’s career list for blocks (116). He was ranked among the Sun Belt Conference’s top shot blockers each of those three seasons.

Butler opens its season with new coach Thad Matta when it hosts New Orleans on Nov. 7.