Top 10 Injury-Struck NBA Careers
An injury is never pleasant but when that injury strikes a player with much promise, the effects are worse. Not only is the player affected, the sport also takes a major hit. Here’s a look at some of those promising players who’s careers have been affected by the injuries they picked up.
10. Shaun Livingston
By 24, Livingston had suffered more knee injuries than entire teams put together. He has torn all possible ligaments on his knees and dislocated every possible joint there. He played basketball, in his first three pro-seasons, but also missed slightly less than half his games.
Having signed up with four NBA Teams and even a D-League setup, Livingston has been constantly on the lookout to get back into the fray. The overall 4th pick at the 2004 NBA Draft, Livingston is surely to suffer more considering his knee injuries never seem to go away.
09. Jonathan Bender
In 2005, it seemed to be all over for Bender! Out injured more than he played, Bender was a 7’ tall player who was as comfortable from behind the arc, as he was at the post. An extremely popular player at the time of the draft, Bender’s true potential remained untapped for the duration of his playing career.
08. Jay Williams
A star for Duke University, Williams had just gotten through his first NBA season with the Chicago Bulls, when he suffered a near-fatal motorcycle accident. He tore three ligaments and was waived off by the Bulls. He tried to come back into the NBA, with the New Jersey Nets, but failed. Williams officially retired and has become an analyst for ESPN. Another fantastic player never to meet his full potential
07. Michael Redd
He was sensational for the Milwaukee Bucks, becoming one of the most talented outside scorers in the game today. With two 50-point games in 2006-07 and a fantastic performance for Team USA at the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics, Redd was truly on fire. However, he tore, and then re-tore, his left knee’s ACL & MCL. That meant Redd would be out of action for a really long time and will have to work really hard to get back to his best.
06. Baron Davis
A two-time NBA All-Star player, Davis has had a terrible time with injuries, especially during his time with the Charlotte Hornets and the Golden State Warriors. Despite being a part of the Los Angeles Clippers, Davis remains in a precarious situation. He has always had the talent to become one of the biggest stars in the NBA, however his injury situation has always been a major hindrance. Baron will always be a popular choice for highlight reels even though his career may never recover.
05. Zydrunas Ilgauskas
The early part of Big Z’s career was riddled with injuries to his foot. However, he did manage quite a few good seasons before getting back into the injury rut. With a fantastic ability to shoot from mid-range and a strong rebounding & blocking ability, Ilgauskas has been one of the better big-men of his generation of players. However, his injuries have since recurred and Ilgauskas has gone back into the injury rut.
04. Penny Hardaway
He was said to be one of the biggest upcoming stars in the NBA. With Shaquille O’Neal, Hardaway created a partnership that rivalled the Kobe Bryant – O’Neal combo as well. However, persistent injuries meant that Hardaway would never complete his career like it could have turned out. A number of years before his actual retirement could have come, Hardaway was sidelined by injury and never managed to make a comeback, despite persistent attempts. Today, the four-time NBA All-Star remains one of the biggest stars to never play out his career.
03. Tracy McGrady
Tracy McGrady is a fantastic player who doesn’t need any introduction. One of the biggest names in the NBA, T-Mac is an extraordinary scorer and wing player. A 7-time NBA All-Star as well as a 2-time NBA Scoring Champion, McGrady has an award list against his name that stretches ‘round the block. However, injuries have been so common in his playing career that McGrady has never really been on the court consistently. His recent bout with injuries has made it worse for him, and signing with the Detroit Pistons has been a step towards a long rehabilitation process.
02. Grant Hill
With 7 NBA All-Star game appearances, Grant Hill is one of the greatest players to play the game. However, amongst those who have career-ruining injuries, Hill will line up right near the front, as he has on this list. At one time, compared with the likes of Kobe Bryant and Scottie Pippen, Hill was constantly plagued by injuries and it is a tribute to his fantastic ability that he did manage what he did. A probable candidature for the NBA Hall of Fame, Hill’s injuries may have hurt his chances in that aspect as well.
01. Yao Ming
The gentle giant from China was a sensational entrant into the NBA. The tallest player in the NBA today, Ming has dominated statistics under the rim, at both ends of the court. However, after a fantastic start to his NBA career at the Houston Rockets, Ming has been struggling with injuries. Already a 7-time NBA All-Star, Ming is just entering his thirties. When fully fit, Ming is better than almost all the elite big men in the league! However, his current state of health has been extremely pendulum-like, oscillating between injured and barely fit. Whether he will get back to his fantastic form of old, we’ll have no choice but to wait and see.
Related news & articles
Monday March 9
In a major blow to the Houston Rockets, their third-leading scorer and star forward, Tracy McGrady has announced that he will undergo a microfracture surgery on his knee and will miss the rest of the season. More
Monday October 6
The NBA-career of Shaun Livingston has been given a second chance by Miami Heat. More
Friday July 3
when Yao Ming, the All-Star center for the Houston Rockets broke his foot, he probably didn’t think that things would get so bad. More
Monday December 14
The New York Knicks signed up Jonathan Bender as a free agent on Sunday, 13th December, 2009. More