EUGENE — Johnathan Loyd’s threshold for pain could be No. 19 Oregon’s gain tonight against Colorado.
Loyd’s status, as well as that of Dominic Artis, for the Pac-12 men’s basketball contest against the Buffaloes at Matthew Knight Arena will be “game-time decisions," UO coach Dana Altman said Tuesday afternoon, leaving open the chance that the Ducks could be without their top two point guards.
Game time between the Ducks (18-4 overall, 7-2 Pac-12) and the Buffaloes (14-7, 4-5) is set for 7:05 p.m. The game will be televised live by ESPNU.
Artis, the Oregon starter at point guard, has missed three straight games with an undisclosed foot injury. And though Altman said he was “close" to returning, Artis still was not practicing with the team on Tuesday.
Loyd, who has started in place of Artis, hurt his right thumb in the first half of Saturday’s loss to California. He returned to play in the second half with a brace on his thumb, and he practiced Tuesday with it wrapped. Altman said Loyd’s playing status will “probably" be determined by how much pain he can tolerate, because there is nothing structurally wrong with the thumb.
“He got through the game the other day because it’s easy when your emotions are flowing and your adrenaline’s flowing and it doesn’t bother you as bad," Altman said. “Then you take a day off and it stiffens up on you. But Johnny’s tough. He’ll try to go, and we’ll see how it feels Thursday night."
If Loyd does not play, freshman Willie Moore will take over at point guard with senior forward E.J. Singler as his emergency backup.
The Ducks have struggled without Artis, going 1-2 in his absence with 65 turnovers.
“We really gotta get that under control," Altman said. “It’s a big point of emphasis this week."