The injury bug gets the Charlotte Hornets again, this time attacking center Cody Zeller, who’s expected to miss six weeks. 

ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported on Monday that Cody Zeller, the Hornets backup center, will be sidelined for six weeks following surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee. The operation will take place on Tuesday.

Heading into their game against the Oklahoma City Thunder on Monday night, Charlotte already had three players that were questionable: Nic Batum, Frank Kaminsky and Jeremy Lamb. All three guys are essential rotational players. On top of that, head coach Steve Clifford isn’t with the team after taking an absence to tend to his health.

Zeller hasn’t played since Dec. 6, a game where Charlotte lost to the Golden State Warriors by 14. Since then, the team’s dropped both of their subsequent contests to the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers. Zeller had missed four games at the beginning of the season as well.

The Hornets boast a 7-12 record in the 19 contests Zeller’s appeared in and are 9-16 overall. The 25-year-old is in his fifth season with the franchise, and his playing time has dipped considerably compared to last year. Zeller’s getting just 19.9 minutes a night and is pouring in 7.2 points, 5.5 rebounds and 1.1 blocks; if we extrapolate that to the per 100 possessions scale, his 13.5 boards and 2.7 blocks are a career-best.

The six-week timetable means Cody Zeller would (hopefully) return toward the end of January. Given the Hornets roster makeup and health situation, things could look much different by the time he comes back.

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