Washington Bullets guard Calbert Cheaney will miss about three weeks after suffering a partial tear of the planter fascia tendon in his left heel during Sunday's game against the New Jersey Nets.
With Cheaney out, the Bullets signed 7-foot-6 center Manute Bol, a 1985 draft pick of the team. Bol, signed to a 10-day contract, was released by the Miami Heat on Jan. 25 and was in uniform last night against his former team.
Cheaney, who had career highs in points in each of the two games before his injury, said he heard something pop as he drove for a layup Sunday. The rookie was examined yesterday at Sibley Hospital in Washington by Dr. Marc Connell, who diagnosed the partial tear.
The injury left the Bullets, who already have Rex Chapman on the injured list with a dislocated right ankle, with no true shooting guard. Since forwards Kenny Walker (broken right cheek) and Larry Stewart (broken right foot) are already on the injured list, Washington has to wait three games before filing for an exemption to place Cheaney there.
Bol replaces Walker, who was hurt a week ago after being caught by an inadvertent elbow by Detroit Pistons guard Joe Dumars. In Bol and 7-7 Gheorghe Muresan, the Bullets have the two tallest active players in the league (Philadelphia 76ers 7-6 center Shawn Bradley is out for the season after suffering a dislocated kneecap and slight bone chip in his left knee).
"When Kenny Walker went down with a fractured cheek we lost a defensive presence, as well as a shot-blocker," said Bullets general manager John Nash. "Manute has certainly proven he can block shots and force teams to change their offense when he's in the game."
Bol is seventh on the NBA all-time shot-blocking list with 2,167. In three seasons with Washington, Bol finished third on the Bullets' all-time shot-blocking list with 907.
He was traded June 8, 1988, to the Golden State Warriors. Bol started this season with Miami but asked for and received his release after complaining about a lack of playing time.
"I'm happy to be back in the league. Maybe I'll play a little bit," Bol said.