Warriors center Kwame Brown could be out for the rest of the season after tearing a muscle in his chest, the team announced Thursday.
Brown will have to undergo surgery after Wednesday's MRI revealed he tore the pectoralis major, the large chest muscle that attaches to his right shoulder. Brown -- who signed a one-year, $7 million deal with the Warriors just over a month ago -- sustained the injury in Tuesday's win over the Miami Heat. Surgery has not been scheduled, but it is expected in the next few days and will keep him out at least three months, according to the Warriors. That puts Brown's return into mid-April. Golden State's final regular season game is April 26.
"Obviously, we're very disappointed, especially for Kwame, who was playing extremely well and had worked diligently since his arrival," Warriors general manager Larry Riley said. "In a short time, he had proven to be the anchor to our low post defense and certainly lived up to his reputation as one of the top interior defenders in the NBA. He had provided us a big, physical presence in the middle, which is something that we've lacked in the past. Unfortunately, surgery of this nature typically requires, approximately, a three-month recovery period."
The injury occurred at the 6:22 mark of the fourth quarter against Miami when Brown fouled Heat forward Udonis Haslem. Brown immediately began grimacing and holding his shoulder. He came out of the game and never returned.
Brown's loss is a big blow for the Warriors. He was averaging 6.3 points and 6.3 rebounds in 20.8 minutes per game. He had started each of the team's last three games, in place of injured center Andris Biedrins. Coach Mark Jackson had raved about Brown's contributions, especially his interior defense.