Kobe Bryant Faces Comeback Challenge With Achilles Injury

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Kobe Bryant

Scribe: Samuel Otis

Email: samuel@thethinkering.com ►


The Kobe ‘Black Mamba’ Bryant says, “The normal timetable for recovery from an Achilles, we’ve shattered that,” he said earlier this week in a report.  “Three-and-a-half months, I can already walk just fine.  I’m lifting weights with the Achilles just fine and that’s different.  So we don’t know what that timetable is going to be.  It’s kind of new territory for us all.”

Bryant clearly feels like the kind of player who’s capable of doing unprecedented things, but this would be pretty special for the 34-year-old veteran. 

According to a study published by The American Journal of Sports Medicine in June said, “A complete rupture of the Achilles tendon and subsequent surgical repair, although rare, seriously affects the career of an NBA player.  Of the 18 players identified over 23 seasons, only %44 were able to return to play for longer than 1 season after their surgical repair.  Those who did return to play did not perform as well as their control-matched peers.”

If Bryant wants to argue that he can come back healthy from this by October, the following from the aforementioned study suggests.

The only factor that predicted the ability to return to play after surgery was the PER 2 years before the injury; for every 1-unit increase in the PER, the odds of returning to play increased by 18%.  In other words, the better the performance of a player 2 years before the injury, the higher the chances he would return to NBA-level basketball postoperatively.

If Bryant actually pulls off this comeback quickly and plays well, then we would have to offer congratulations and admiration.

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