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New Orleans Pelicans forward Cheick Diallo (13) warms up in Smoothie King Center for the Pelicans opening preseason game against the Chicago Bulls in New Orleans, La. Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2017.

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON

The Pelicans will be without their first big man off the bench against the Thunder on Friday.

New Orleans forward Cheick Diallo will not play against Oklahoma City at 7 p.m. Friday in Chesapeake Energy Arena because of a left ankle sprain, the team announced Thursday afternoon.

Diallo, who began limping after a second-half defensive play in the paint during Tuesday's 113-109 loss to the Bulls, is expected to return to the Pelicans in a few days as his injury is not considered to be serious, a source told The Advocate.

Diallo, who entered as the first interior sub off the bench in the middle of the Pelicans' 46-point first quarter versus the Bulls, finished with five points and six rebounds in 13 minutes against Chicago.

Diallo, center Omer Asik (illness), forward Solomon Hill (torn left hamstring) and guard Frank Jackson (fractured right foot) are all unavailable for Friday's 7 p.m. tip against the Thunder.