Just as DeSagana Diop started to get increased playing time under new coach Paul Silas, the center has been lost for the season with a ruptured right Achilles' tendon.
Tests revealed the injury on Monday, three days after Diop was sidelined in the second quarter of a loss to Golden State.
Diop had been stuck on the bench under Larry Brown for much of the past two seasons. But the 7-footer played 23 minutes and blocked three shots in Silas' debut against Detroit last week. Diop, who played under Silas in Cleveland, had five rebounds in 22 minutes against the Cavaliers two nights later.
"He was going to get a lot of playing time. He was enthused, upbeat. It's just too bad that it had to happen at this time," Silas said. "He hadn't played a lot, but he knew he was going to play for me. It's just a shame."
Diop's injury leaves the Bobcats with only two true centers, Nazr Mohammed and Kwame Brown. But Silas said it wasn't certain they'll look to add a big man.
"I'm not sure. Kwame is going to have to play a lot," Silas said. "I still have Nazr and Dominic (McGuire) can play smaller centers. We'll just have to see how it goes. If we can't get it done with those two guys we're certainly going to have to look at it."