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Sunday, May 4
Updated: May 4, 12:44 PM ET
Fox's foot injured worse than initially believed news services

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. -- The Los Angeles Lakers already knew starting forward Rick Fox was lost for the playoffs.

But further examination of Fox's injured left foot reveals more tendon damage than originally thought, making it possible Fox will be out from 6-9 months or even a year, the L.A. Daily News reports.

"I'm getting more cautious," Fox told the newspaper, "because we've found more out than we had found initially."

The Lakers knew from an initial MRI that Fox tore his peroneus longus tendon last Sunday against the Timberwolves. But Fox visited a specialist in New York on Friday and learned of a split in his peroneus brevis, complicating the surgical procedure he expects to undergo within two weeks.

"The doctor keeps saying anywhere from six months to a year," Fox said. "But I keep thinking along the lines of getting back and conquering this challenge, but (I) also think about, 'OK, what's the risk factor of being able to walk with my kids and run, and make sure I'm not foolish in that respect and rush back too soon?'

"So have things changed for me as a basketball player forever? Yeah. Does it mean I still play basketball? Yeah. But now the challenge is to be as effective, or in some cases more effective, if I come back stronger than I was before."

Mike Modano of the Dallas Stars and former New York Yankee Chili Davis underwent similar surgeries to the one Fox faces during their careers.

Devean George, who signed a four-year, $18.45 million deal with the Lakers last summer, has taken Fox's place in the lineup.

"I'm prepared to play whatever role I have to," Fox said. "I don't know if I'll ever be able to make my fans happy again. And I don't know what role I'll be able to get to, to make my coaches comfortable."
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