Basketball

Blazers' Roy to have surgery on knee today

Portland Trail Blazers guard Brandon Roy will have surgery on his right knee today and will miss the playoffs, the team announced.

Roy, who averaged 21.5 points, needs the surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his right knee.

The three-time All-Star out of the University of Washington was injured in Portland’s 91-88 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers last Sunday. He missed Portland’s final two regular-season games.

Roy originally said that he would try to play on the knee for the playoffs. Sixth-seeded Portland plays the third-seeded Suns in the first round starting on Sunday in Phoenix.

“This was not an easy decision to make,” Roy said in a statement. “But, if I’m going to be out there, I want to be contributing. If we’re fortunate enough to advance in the playoffs, having the surgery now gives me the best opportunity to help our team.”

Recovery for such a procedure is typically four to six weeks.

Roy’s injury is the latest to strike the Blazers, who surprised many by even making the playoffs.

Center Greg Oden and Joel Przybilla both sustained injuries that required season-ending surgery. Forward Nicolas Batum missed the first half of the season after shoulder surgery, and swingman Rudy Fernandez had midseason back troubles

In all, 13 Blazers missed a combined 311 regular-season games because of injuries, second only to the Warriors this season. Only guard Andre Miller and forward Martell Webster have played in all 82 games.

“At the end of the day you still have to go out and play,” said Webster, a former Seattle Prep star. “We’re going to rally together and play the game.”

Coach Nate McMillan gave the team a day off on Thursday after they lost to the Golden State Warriors, 122-116, the night before.

“This is a setback, but we’ve been overcoming injuries all season long,” general manager Kevin Pritchard said. “This is about looking long-term and doing what’s best for Brandon.”

Sixers fire Jordan

Philadelphia 76ers president and general manager Ed Stefanski fired coach Eddie Jordan on Thursday after one season as coach, saying the Sixers took an “unacceptable” step backward after two straight seasons in the playoffs.

The Sixers finished 27-55 and will be looking for their fourth coach in three seasons. Stefanski, who has been under fire for a series of ill-fated decisions, said he still has management’s support and will hire the next coach.

Jordan, who was fired last season by Washington, has two years remaining on his contract and is owed $6 million.

Fastbreaks

TNT’s coverage of the NBA attracted the league’s largest regular-season audience on cable in 14 years. The network’s average of 1.7 million viewers for its 53 games was cable’s best for pro basketball since 1995-96. … The Los Angeles Clippers said on its Web site that interim head coach Kim Hughes has been dismissed. Hughes took over for Mike Dunleavy on Feb. 4 and went 8-25. … Los Angeles Lakers coach Phil Jackson was fined $35,000 for criticizing officials after the Lakers beat Sacramento on Tuesday night.

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