Wednesday, September 19, 2007
The Aftermath of an Injury
February 26, 2007 is certainly a day that Los Angeles Clippers point guard Shaun Livingston. In the opening minutes of their home game against the Charlotte Bobcats, Livingston landed awkwardly following a lay-up attempt and tore three of the four ligaments in his left knee.
Clippers team Doctor Steven Shimoyama “popped the (left) knee” back in place which relieved any pain that Livingston felt at that moment. Livingston had an Magnetic Resonance Image exam the next day (Tuesday, February 27, 2007) “which revealed tears in the anterior cruciate ligament, posterior cruciate ligament, medial collateral ligament and lateral meniscus.” These are three of the four major ligaments in one’s knee.
Livingston was also reported to have “dislocated his patella, besides the previously diagnosed dislocation of his tibia-femoral.” Clippers physician Dr. Tony Daly said Tuesday that "it's probably the most serious injury you can have to the knee" and that Livingston may “miss all of next year."
Yahoo.com shares that Shaun Livingston, “a three-year veteran who was drafted by the Clippers out of high school, has been hampered by injuries and has yet to play a full season in the NBA. Prior to his devastating knee injury, Livingston sat out two games in January 2007 with a sprained right ankle. He also missed 39 games during his rookie season (2004) because of a dislocated right knee, and another 12 that season because of torn cartilage in his right shoulder. Last season he sat out the first 21 games with a stress reaction in his lower back.” At seasons end, Livingston would have missed an estimated 42% of the total 246 games he could have possibly participated in.
Video of the Clippers point guard (http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/players/3821/) had garnered a number of hits in YouTube.com. However, a few days later, this particular video was subsequently removed from the site. I have been able to track down a copy of the video. I should warn you however that this is not for the squeamish. (http://www.gofish.com/player.gfp?gfid=30-1084147)
Some observers have said that (and it is!) far worse than the dislocated shoulder injury suffered by the Miami Heat's Dwyane Tyrone Wade. (http://www.gofish.com/player.gfp?gfid=30-1082720). Lastly, some critiques have also noted that Livingston stands to lose over $40 million dollars in future earnings due to this injury.
The Los Angeles Clippers have been notorious for underpaying their health players. So in the case of Livingston who has about a year and $11 million dollars left in his existing contract, why should the Clippers break the proverbial bank and sign a guard with a bad wheel to a multi-million dollar extension. One blog site even went as far as saying that it would be impractical to sign Livingston since "were not even sure if he is going to walk without a limp."
Many career threatening injuries have happened to numerous players from different sports. But what Livingston doesn't have going for him is a college education, since he bypassed college to become the fourth overall pick in the NBA Draft three years ago.
Here's wishing Shaun Livingston a speedy recovery. And however it turns out, $11 million dollars is still a lot of money. So as early as now, he should invest wisely.