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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    “Wise has knee surgery, off court 4-6 weeks”

    UA guard Nic Wise drives to the basket in an 82-60 loss to UCLA in Pauley Pavilion on Saturday. Wise underwent knee surgery yesterday and is expected to be out four to six weeks.
    UA guard Nic Wise drives to the basket in an 82-60 loss to UCLA in Pauley Pavilion on Saturday. Wise underwent knee surgery yesterday and is expected to be out four to six weeks.

    Nic Wise had arthroscopic surgery yesterday to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee and is expected to miss four to six weeks, said UA interim head coach Kevin O’Neill.

    It’s possible Wise could be ready for the Pacific 10 Conference Tournament, March 12-15 in Los Angeles.

    “”It’s a tough break for Nic,”” O’Neill said.ÿ””He was playing very well for us.ÿWe hope to get him healthy as quickly as possible.””

    The sophomore guard injured his knee during warmups at Southern California on Thursday, but still played 36 minutes, scoring nine points and dishing out eight assists in the process. Then he played 32 minutes at UCLA on Saturday and scored 12.

    The Wildcats had Sunday and Monday off of practice, but Wise was removed from practice Tuesday. He underwent a magnetic resonance imaging yesterday morning and had surgery later in the day.

    Dubbed as the team’s sparkplug, Wise has played in each of Arizona’s 22 games this season – including six starts – and has brought energy to the team off the bench when he didn’t start. He was shooting 47.3 percent (61-for-129) from the floor and led the conference averaging 1.86 steals per game before the surgery.

    “”For me, I like the fact that he plays at full throttle all the time,”” O’Neill said. “”Sometimes that ends up good, sometimes it ends up bad, but he’s always trying to do the winning thing.””

    Wise averaged 11.8 points, 4.7 assists and 2.2 rebounds in conference play. He also ranks first in the conference in steals (2.44 per game) and 3-point percentage (.567) in 34.4 minutes per game over the last nine games. He’s scored in double figures nine times this season, including a career-high 17 points Jan. 3 against Oregon State.

    “”Nic’s been one of our most valuable players, even back to when (guard) Jerryd (Bayless) was hurt,”” O’Neill said, pointing back to when Bayless sat out four games with a sprained knee – a span when Arizona went 1-3.

    Bayless declined to comment about Wise’s situation after practice yesterday.

    With Wise out, O’Neill said that forward Zane Johnson and guard Daniel Dillon will likely see more playing time, but Wise’s presence will be missed.

    “”Nic Wise has had a great year for us so far,”” O’Neill said. “”In any game we’re without Nic we’re in trouble.””

    – Michael Schwartz contributed to this report

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