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Joe Johnson Injury: Right Elbow Surgery To Sideline Johnson For 4-6 Weeks

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Atlanta Hawks guard Joe Johnson will miss the next four to six weeks, needing arthroscopic surgery on his right elbow. Johnson was already sitting out tonight's game against the Memphis Grizzlies, and missed a shootaround earlier this morning. He's been in discomfort due to the elbow for a couple days now, having an MRI and a meeting with Dr. James Andrews yesterday.

The object in his elbow is being called a "loose body," which is apparently a piece of runaway cartilage. They're common in knees and shoulders as well, and can cause joints to lock in addition to pain and stiffness.

As it's his shooting elbow, one could wonder whether the condition has contributed to his poor shooting. But Johnson hasn't played since yesterday morning, when the pain apparently flared up. Johnson's scoring is down to 17.1 points per game, though the Hawks team scoring has been about the same as last year's.

Johnson has only missed 27 games in his Hawks career, 25 of them all due to one injury. If he's able to return in exactly one month -- an aggressive timetable -- he'd have missed 17 games.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.