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Josh Smith Injury: Hawks' Smith Out Vs. Bulls With Sprained Right MCL Injury

The Atlanta Hawks will be without a good part of their depth and grit when they take on the Chicago Bulls on Wednesday. Josh Smith is out with a sprained right MCL injury.

The Hawks forward was injured in the second quarter of Atlanta's 100-90 loss to the Denver Nuggets on Monday after banging knees with the Nuggets' J.R. Smith. He returned to action near the end of the second half, but did not answer the bell after the break.

Atlanta withered down the stretch to finish their seven-game road trip at 3-4.

The good news is that the team determined that Josh Smith will not require an MRI on the knee and have officially listed him as day-to-day.

The bad news is that Josh Smith got hurt at a terrible time for the Hawks, who play 10 of their next 11 at home. However, Atlanta is in the midst of a brutal stretch of basketball. After facing the Bulls on Wednesday, the Hawks take on the Oklahoma City Thunder, the New York Knicks and the Los Angeles Lakers.

Atlanta needs Josh Smith's physical presence in the post and ability to grab rebounds to stand much of a chance against these elite-level (OKC and LA) and better-than-average (NY) teams.

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