Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Pistons big man Jon Leuer has confirmed to Rod Beard of The Detroit News (Twitter link) that he’ll undergo surgery on his troublesome left ankle. The procedure, which will take place today, will sideline Leuer for the rest of the 2017-18 season.

Leuer, 28, was expected to be a key part of the Pistons’ frontcourt rotation after averaging 25.9 minutes per contest in 2016-17, his first year in Detroit. However, ankle problems have limited the veteran to just eight games this season. Leuer hasn’t seen the court since Oct. 31, and while the injury wasn’t initially expected to be a season-ending ailment, it didn’t heal as the player and team had hoped.

The confirmation that Leuer will undergo season-ending surgery doesn’t come as a major surprise, considering word broke on Thursday that the Pistons had applied for a disabled player exception to replace Leuer. The club had to apply for that exception before a Jan. 15 deadline, and it’s only granted to teams with an injured player who is deemed likely to be sidelined through June 15. So the Pistons were prepared for this possibility.

Should the Pistons’ DPE application be approved, they would be granted a cap exception worth about $5.25MM. That said, the provision wouldn’t give the team an additional roster spot, so the club would have to cut or trade one of its 15 NBA players. As we outline in our glossary entry, a disabled player exception allows a team to sign a player to a one-year deal or trade for a player in the final year of his contract. If the Pistons receive a DPE and don’t use it by March 12, it will expire.

As for Leuer, he’ll focus on getting back on the court for the 2018-19 campaign. He has two more years and $19.5MM left on his contract after this season.

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This article first appeared on Hoops Rumors and was syndicated with permission.

PLAYERS: Jon Leuer
TEAMS: Detroit Pistons
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