Sam Naismith will likely miss the rest of the AFL season, with scans confirming the injury-plagued ruckman has ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament.
The luckless 27-year-old suffered the serious knee injury late in the Swans’ 28-point loss to the Western Bulldogs on Thursday night.
“It is terrible news for Sam and really disappointing for the team,” Swans general manager of football Charlie Gardiner said on Friday.
“He will see a surgeon next week and we will then lay out next steps from there.
“Our thoughts are with Sam at the moment and we will wrap our arms around him as he gets on with his recovery.”
It continues Naismith’s horror run since injuring the same knee at training in 2018, with the subsequent knee reconstruction and ensuing complications keeping him out for two full seasons.
His comeback was the feel-good story of round one, marking 919 days between AFL games.
But it was short-lived as COVID-19 brought the 2020 campaign crashing to a halt in March and a sore hamstring saw him held out for the first two games since the restart.
Thursday night’s clash was the first time Naismith had played since his sister Kristi died from pancreatic cancer, with the Swans donning a black armband in her memory.
“He came back and played round one, played really well, then in the break he lost his sister. Then he comes back and does his knee,” coach John Longmire said post-match.
“We need to be with him and look after him. Because he’s had a terrible run, in a number of ways. We need to look after him.”