Hawks first-round draft pick Lucas Nogueira has been diagnosed with severe tendinitis in his knees, his agent Aylton Tesch told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Nogueira has been prescribed two months of rest. He will remain in Los Angeles to undergo rehabilitation and physical therapy before returning to Spain to continue playing this season. The center suspended his contract with his Spanish League team this month in order to seek treatment on his ailing knees.
Nogueira will not seek medical opinions from Hawks team doctors, his agent said.
Nogueira had been playing for Asefa Estudiantes Madrid in the ACB League while the Hawks retain his rights. The 20-year-old appeared in six games this season. He averaged 5.7 points and 4.2 rebounds in 17.5 minutes. He most recently played on Dec. 7 and had seven points and three rebounds in 15 minutes.
The 7-foot center was taken with the 16th overall selection in June’s NBA draft. A native of Brazil, Nogueira returned for another season in the Spanish League to continue his development and add muscle to his 225-pound frame. He appeared in five summer league games for the Hawks and averaged 6.4 points and 6.0 rebounds.