ATLANTA (AP) -Denver Nuggets forward Nene underwent surgery Monday to remove a testicular tumor, and a biopsy will determine if it was cancerous.
The Brazilian player took an indefinite leave of absence Friday, and there is no timetable for his return.
``Nene is recovering well and in good condition,'' Dr. Fernando J. Kim said.
The operation was done at Denver Health Medical Center. Kim said a ``right testicular mass was found incidentally and it was managed surgically.'' The tumor was found last week in an exam by team physician Dr. Saurabh Mangalik.
``I want to thank my fans, my teammates, the Nuggets organization and everyone that's been supporting me,'' Nene said in a statement released by the team before Tuesday night's game at Atlanta.
``My victory will represent their victory as well. Thanks for being with me in this moment. I will remember all the appreciation. I thank God that we could detect this at such an early stage.''
Denver coach George Karl noted that he and his son, Coby, have fought cancer. George Karl has had surgery for prostate cancer.
``As a cancer survivor and someone who has watched his son go through two cancer-related surgeries, I know firsthand the emotions and fears that you feel when someone says you might have it,'' Karl said. ``Our job now is to support Nene and be there for him as a family. Basketball is at the bottom of the totem poll at a time like this. We just want him to get healthy.''
Nene is averaging 6.4 points and 6.4 rebounds. He missed 22 games earlier this season after undergoing left thumb surgery. He was out for all but one game of the 2005-06 season after tearing a knee ligament, and he was sidelined for 27 games the season before with a variety of ailments.
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