Given the extreme physical nature of the game, it is little wonder that playing basketball often comes with a significant risk of injury. Athletes who play this sport often inadvertently expose themselves to being hurt simply because that is what the plays require from them. Even so, players should still approach each game with caution and be mindful of important ways that they can avoid being injured. As witnessed by some of the craziest NBA injuries on record, the risk of being hurt is real and can bring a player’s basketball aspirations to a permanent end.
NBA Player Injuries
The NBA remains one of the most beloved athletic organizations in the world. Fans love the competition and rivalries that make up much of each season’s highlights each year. However, this level of excitement often does not come without players being hurt, sometimes seriously, and having to either end their seasons or careers. Some of the craziest NBA injuries on record include:
- Joel Przybilla
Dislocated and Ruptured Knee – As Przybilla was coming down from a basket shot, he landed wrong on his knee and suffered both a dislocation and rupture of his patella. His immense pain was witnessed by live fans as well as TV spectators.
- Josh Howard’s
Rolled Ankle Sprain – Josh Howard likewise was heading toward the basket when he rolled his ankle, suffering a sprain so severe that he had to undergo surgery to repair it.
- Steve Nash
Dislocated Nose – Nash collided with a member of the opposing team, Derek Fisher, and dislocated his nose so significantly that it was literally hanging from his face. With the cameras rolling and basketball clock ticking, he quickly popped it back into place and continued playing.
- Tony Allen
Torn ACL – Allen was showboating by making a spectacular dunk. As he came down from the basket, however, he tore his ACL and had to leave the game.
- Andrew Bogut
Injured Arm – Bogut landed wrong on his arm and suffered extensive injuries. He sprained his wrist, dislocated his elbow, and broke his hand. He was sidelined for 2 years following those injuries.
- Allan Ray
Dislocated Eye – During a play, Ray suffered a dislocated eye. Fans in the stand and viewers at home witnessed his eye bulging from its socket.
While these injuries stand out as among the most extraordinary in NBA history, players on every level of this sport still should be aware of how playing basketball can put their bodies in harm’s way. In fact, the most common injuries from this sport can stem from overuse of muscles, tendons, and ligaments. They can also be more traumatic and require more extensive treatments and recovery times.
Injuries from Overuse
Players who overuse their arms, legs, shoulders and other areas could be injured when they attempt to play yet another game. Some injuries from overuse include:
- Torn or pulled ACLs
- Torn or pulled hamstrings
- Patellar tendonitis
- Achilles tendonitis
These injuries can take an athlete out of a game and bench him or her on the sidelines. Players with these damages can also be sidelined for the entire season if they continue to play without properly recovering. They can re-injure themselves and cause permanent damage to their ligaments, muscles, and tendons.
Basketball players can also suffer traumatic injuries that end there playing permanently and compromise their ability to walk and move normally again, even after they recover. Some of the more common traumatic basketball injuries include:
Recovery from these damages can range from getting stitches, undergoing surgery, or learning how to move properly again through rehabilitation. People who break bones or suffer spinal injuries often cannot ever resume playing again.
Avoiding Basketball Injuries
With the risk of being hurt in mind, players may wonder what they can do to avoid such injuries. While they may never be 100 percent safe on the court, they can be proactive in protecting their bodies by remembering these tips:
- Stay Hydrated and Avoid Getting Overheated – Dehydration and overheating can make a person weak and disoriented on the court.
- Condition and Practice – Staying in top physical form can be vital in keeping a player’s body strong and capable of withstanding the physical demands of the game. Practicing regularly also can minimize mistakes that could lead to injuries.
- Avoid Overuse – When they experience pain and strain in a joint, muscle or other body areas, they should avoid overusing this part of their bodies. Ideally, they should rest and wait to play until they are stronger.
- Get Clearance from a Doctor – Players can minimize their risk of injuries by getting a physical before each season and by getting clearance from to make sure that they are properly healed from prior injuries.
Basketball remains a much-loved sport in this country and elsewhere. Athletes should keep in mind some of the craziest NBA injuries on record and take steps to avoid common injuries that may await them on the court.