MUST READ: Rose a casualty of NBA schedule
I wrote my stance on Derrick Rose’s injury, as well as this entire NBA season, last night and took some flack. It’s understandable. I’m just some guy with a computer and a tumblr account – I fully admit it. You have no real reason to trust me.
However, I encourage you to read this piece on Rose, by Chicagoan Michael Wilbon. I want the comparisons to be striking, but they’re likely just similar. Let’s play a brand new game I like to call “I Wrote/Wilbon Wrote.”
Multiple injuries in the same body hemisphere are generally tied to each other. For example, when you try to run, cut and stop with a bad ankle, you compensate with other parts of your body. In Rose’s case, he had bleeding in his groin. He wasn’t 100%. Without the medical evidence, I could never scientifically correlate the two, but I’d bet the farm Derrick Rose knowingly or unwittingly put undue pressure on other parts of his legs to compensate for his injury.
And here is one cold, hard fact: there is absolutely, postiviely, no chance this accelerated, 66-game NBA schedule helped Derrick Rose avoid injury, or recuperate from one.
I’ve talked with multiple trainers who work with NBA players. They say very few — if any — athletes in the NBA put the pressure on their joints and move their bodies with the torque Rose does. These opinions weren’t offered Saturday, in the wake of Rose tearing his ACL; they were offered in great detail weeks ago, when Rose was trying to come back from one injury, then the next, then the next. What’s that old song: “The leg bone’s connected to the hip bone … .” Well, it is. Everything is connected, and when Rose hurt his toe, it affected his hip, which affected his knee. And he never had the time, in this compressed season, to condition himself the way he had previously — the way he would have this season.
The assumption is Derrick Rose, with the help of advanced medicine and physical therapy, will come back at 100% from this devastating knee injury, but bodies don’t respond the same way. Just because some athletes have done it doesn’t mean they all will.
Players come back from ACL tears all the time now. Tony Allen tore his ACL and MCL and has come back strong. Chris Paul has overcome a serious knee injury suffered in 2010. Rose is a worker. He’ll come back. But how soon and how completely, only time will tell. Will he ever explode and finish at the rim like he did these first 3 1/2 years? God, there’s no guarantee he will.
The league crammed games into the season they had left, and increased the likelihood of serious injury to its players. Jeremy Lin, Derrick Rose, Ricky Rubio, Kevin Love, Kobe Bryant, among others – the list of NBA injuries is long and impressive.
One after another, players would go down. Players of significance, we’re talking. Al Horford, Brook Lopez, Eric Gordon, more recently Ray Allen. [Rip] Hamilton would say, “See, I told you. There’s nothing like this season.”
And don’t forget Dwight Howard. Orlando’s tumultuous season was ruined when Howard shut himself down. Let’s keep going — I wrote:
Other coaches compensated by resting players, so when you paid your hard earned paycheck to attend a game at your local arena, you were robbed of your opportunity to see you favorite player, or favorite team at full strength.
Injury avoidance or maintenance has been the key to the entire season. You think Gregg Popovich didn’t know what he was doing when he would simply sit certain players at certain times? Of course Pop knew.
This is the season we paid for, everyone. We gave the NBA money only to watch coaches sit players for fear of injury. We watched other players give 100% and grind themselves into the ground. We watched David Stern break up the legal business deal between two consenting parties which will have widespread, long term consequences on the futures of 4 franchises. It’s disgusting, and we’re all to blame. We allowed it when we voted with our cash.
I hope David Stern steps down this Summer. He should. I hope I’ve learned an important lesson about being a responsible consumer.
Read Wilbon’s full piece here.