Jerryd Bayless’ first season with the Sixers is over before it really got off to a start.
Bayless underwent surgery to repair a torn ligament in his left wrist on Thursday at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York. His wrist will be immobilized for the next 12 weeks. He suffered the injury during training camp and played only three games this season.
The Sixers signed Bayless this summer to a three-year, $27 million deal. They intended for him to be the starting point guard and provide a veteran presence in his ninth season.
“While it’s unfortunate Jerryd will miss the remainder of the season, we feel confident that today’s procedure will resolve his wrist injury and related discomfort,” Sixers president of basketball operations Bryan Colangelo said. “Jerryd is to be credited with his committed and professional approach in making every effort to avoid this outcome.”
Bayless averaged 11.0 points, 4.0 rebounds and 4.3 assists in three games.
His surgery concludes a three-month long question of his playing availability. Back in October, Bayless and the Sixers opted to use non-surgical treatments. This included platelet rich plasma (PRP) treatment in late November.
“They take your own blood and they spin it,” Bayless said at the time. “They take all the good cells and they shoot it back into your wrist.”
Bayless fell multiple times in his second game, which caused what the Sixers described as “significant impact” to his wrist. He and the Sixers determined he would have surgery after meeting with numerous wrist and hand specialists.
The Sixers inked Bayless to complement Ben Simmons, who originally was going to play point-forward. Their plans were altered when both Simmons (foot) and Bayless were injured during training camp. As Simmons works toward his return, Sixers head coach Brett Brown decided to make him the starting point guard. Bayless could have shifted to the two spot. Of course that lineup will have to wait for now.
Sergio Rodriguez has been filling the starting point guard void in Bayless’ absence. He stepped into that role in his first season back in the NBA since 2009-10, after playing in his native Spain. T.J. McConnell has been coming off the bench as the backup.
So what’s next? The Sixers plan for Simmons to become their starting point guard when he returns. In the meantime, expect Rodriguez and McConnell to continue with their current assignments. If the Sixers find themselves needing a quick fix of depth at that position, they could turn to Cat Barber (16.7 points, 3.9 rebounds, 3.8 assists) from their D-League affiliate, the Delaware 87ers. If they end up looking for further help once Simmons is back, they could explore their options through a trade.
Bayless, who has played for seven teams, holds career averages of 8.6 points and 2.9 assists.