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Utah Jazz: Alec Burks undergoes ankle surgery; out indefinitely

Alec Burks of the Utah Jazz answers questions during an end of season press conference at Zions Bank Basketball Center in Salt Lake City, Thursday, April 14, 2016.
Alec Burks of the Utah Jazz answers questions during an end of season press conference at Zions Bank Basketball Center in Salt Lake City, Thursday, April 14, 2016.
Ravell Call,

SAN ANTONIO — Alec Burks’ long offseason rehabilitation just got a lot longer.

Burks, who has been rehabbing a left ankle that was injured last December with a surgery in January and another procedure in June, underwent arthroscopic surgery again Tuesday in New York and will be out for an undetermined time.

The surgery Tuesday was to “clean out some debris” in his lower leg, said Jazz general manager Dennis Lindsey. He said Burks has been practicing and apparently looking healthy, but said after a certain amount of time, he would experience pain.

“That fall was major trauma … and there certainly has been some residual effect,” said Lindsey, referring to the foul by Paul Pierce on Burks last Dec. 26. “We were really patient with him this summer. We did a lot of imaging. When he would hit a certain threshold, he started to experience some pain.”

Lindsey said the Jazz had top specialists from around the country trying to figure out Burks’ injury.

“We’ve had four of the world’s best, and they’ve come together and they agreed that what we were able to remove today was the source of the pain,” Lindsey said. “We feel terrible for Alec because he’s done everything we asked and been very compliant in working out and very patient. We expect that the debris was part of the issue. The quote from the medical specialist was that the surgical part of the ankle looked very good and there were no hot spots there.”

As for a timetable for Burks’ return, Lindsey said “as you know we very rarely give out timetables, so we’ll let the symptoms dictate.”

Burks, who played in just 27 games in 2014-15 because of a shoulder injury and 31 last year after the broken leg, returned to Salt Lake City after the surgery, where he will rehabilitate.

“You feel bad for Alec and everything that’s he’s been through to try to get healthy,” said coach Quin Snyder. “Obviously he was a player we had plans for when we put the team together. He means a lot to our team. It will be nice when he comes back. Hopefully that will happen, but we aren’t sure what the process is.”

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