Former Warriors Call-Up Chris Hunter Out for Season With Torn Achilles
Despite playing well for the Mad Ants again this season while fighting through various injuries, the NBA won't come calling again this season as Hunter has been shut down for the rest of the season after tearing his Achilles tendon in Fort Wayne's Christmas Day game.
"Chris Hunter was waived due to injury," Mad Ants Team President Jeff Potter wrote on his blog Tuesday. "He had successful surgery on his achilles with the very capable Dr. Jerry Cooper last night at FWO (Fort Wayne Orthopaedics, a local hospital), and he will begin the road to recovery ASAP. I think we speak for all Mad Ants fans when we wish him the very best during this rehab, and that we will be there to support him in any way we can."
Hunter, who was unable to play on the NBA's summer circuit due to tendinitis in his knee, returned to the D-League this season in hopes of getting another opportunity to earn a call-up, but he never seemed to recover fully from the the tendinitis issues.
The knee issues led to Hunter being brought off of the bench for the seven games he played in a Mad Ants uniform this season. While he was effective to the tune of averaging 14.0 points and 6.4 rebounds per game in just 21 minutes of action, it would have been an unprecedented move for an NBA team to call-up a player that wasn't able to crack his D-League team's starting lineup.
With Hunter out of the lineup, the Mad Ants will be forced to rely on a "Nellieball-like" frontcourt featuring 6-8 Darnell Lazare at center and 6-7 Marvin Phillips at power forward, with 6-10 Anthony Kent being the only other player over 6-5 on the roster. While that frontcourt has helped Fort Wayne to a league-best 9-4 record, it might not be long until teams are able to figure out how to take advantage of the size mismatch up front.
In a corresponding move, the Mad Ants have reacquired rookie Chris Kramer. Kramer, a 6-3 rookie out of Purdue, started the first six games of the season for Fort Wayne before being released due to an MCL injury.