The NBA has had a plethora of serious injuries of superstars in the last couple of years, particularly naming Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant and Derrick Rose. Three MVP’s, three extensive injuries that can affect the viewership around the league. Many others have found their names on the injury report, but these three specifically have meant a great deal to what the NBA has been about, what it is about, and what it will be about. Three faces of the NBA have now had at least one season jeopardized by serious injuries.
2013 was not particularly a good year for the Los Angeles Lakers. On the day of December 17 Bryant suffers a very serious knee injury on the court. All hope of the Lakers season seemed to drop as the body of Bryant did. Laker’s fans had a good idea just how bad the season was going to be because it would be almost identical to the season before when Bryant suffers a torn Achilles tendon. The Los Angeles Lakers, a cornerstone franchise of the league, are always used to having a winning team to contend for the championship. The Lakers have always been a factor since the day that Bryant walked in the door in 1997. Five championships, an NBA MVP in 2008, and a given all-star weekend starter is what he has brought into the league besides being one of the most exciting, hard-working, and entertaining figures in all of sports. His comeback in this season will be one of the grand story-lines to follow this year.
The NBA is changing in many ways. One of those ways is the new style point guard. Times have changed as the traditional point guard, small and smart, has changed to electric and superhuman athleticism. The start of this new age point guard was brought on immediately as Derrick Rose came out of the University of Memphis just after one year. He came into the league changing the way they do things. He immediately took over as one of the most athletic and exciting players to watch. He joined a franchise that had not had the kind of hope since Michael Jordan left. He came in hot as he won the Rookie of the Year in 2009. Chicago had something very special. Just two years later in 2011, Rose won the MVP award becoming the youngest ever award winner of the prestigious award; then it was his turn to join the injury report. In 2012, he suffers his first and not last knee injury. What was one knee injury become two knee injuries. Presently, after three seasons away from the spotlight of Chicago and the fans that love him so much, he will also make his return to the court in what seems to be a year of redemption for once great players.
The past superstar is Bryant, the future is Rose, the present has given us Kevin Durant. Durant is in the prime of his career. After just winning his first MVP in the 2013-2014 season, Durant unexpectedly breaks his foot in a Oklahoma City practice. He has been putting up extreme numbers since entering the league, winning the league scoring title for three straight seasons. There was no doubt in all the league that Durant is 1B to Lebron James as being the best players in all of the world.
With these injuries to NBA superstars Kobe, D-Rose, and Durant, the NBA is losing huge stars to injuries that are sadly becoming frequent around the league. To note some other injuries: Rajon Rondo, Dwight Howard in 2011, Kyrie Irving, Paul George, Yao Ming some years back, Russell Westbrook, and Blake Griffin missing his first year in the league as well. Key injuries to big name players are devastating to the league and to the excitement of the Association.
By Evan Linneman