Nascar

Denny Hamlin suffers knee injury playing basketball

DARLINGTON, SC - SEPTEMBER 05: Denny Hamlin, driver of the #20 Sport Clips Toyota, stands on the grid prior to the NASCAR XFINITY Series VFW Sport Clips Help A Hero 200 at Darlington Raceway on September 5, 2015 in Darlington, South Carolina. (Photo by Matt Hazlett/Getty Images)

DARLINGTON, SC - SEPTEMBER 05: Denny Hamlin, driver of the #20 Sport Clips Toyota, stands on the grid prior to the NASCAR XFINITY Series VFW Sport Clips Help A Hero 200 at Darlington Raceway on September 5, 2015 in Darlington, South Carolina. (Photo by Matt Hazlett/Getty Images)

Joe Gibbs Racing announced Wednesday afternoon that Denny Hamlin suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in his right knee while playing basketball Tuesday night.

Hamlin underwent an MRI on Wednesday morning to confirm the diagnosis and has been evaluated by the medical team at OrthoCarolina in Charlotte, N.C., where he received medical clearance to continue racing.

Hamlin, who is already locked into the Chase for the Sprint Cup by virtue of his win at Martinsville in the spring, is expected to compete in each of the final 11 races of 2015, including Saturday night's Federated Auto Parts 400 at Richmond International Raceway, where he's a two-time winner.

The injury will require Hamlin to undergo surgery after the season.

This is not the first time Hamlin has suffered an injury to his ACL while playing basketball. In January 2010, the Chesterfield, Va., native tore the ACL in his left knee while participating in a pickup game. He underwent surgery after that season, as well.

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