Toronto Raptors forward DeMarre Carroll penned an open letter to fans over at DeMarreCarroll5.life/blog on Monday. It’s a good read overall, so go check it out (he talks a lot about fan support, for what it’s worth), but I wanted to pass along the section about the injuries he dealt with during the season.
Here’s a clip:
We all thought it was just a little sprain. My pain tolerance is so high just because of what I’ve been through in my life. (Being shot, my liver condition, broken nose and pinky, etc.) I kept playing knowing my knee was swollen and it didn’t seem to get any better. We played a couple weeks later and remember hitting my knee with a Clippers player going through a screen at end of first half. The same knee that was already swollen. This time the pain was sharp but more intense. I realized at that point something is seriously wrong. I attempted to play through it but wasn’t playing at a level of satisfaction. I was only a shell of myself which affected me mentally. The medical staff eventually told me we need to go see the doctor. Hours later, I saw the doctor and immediately after seeing him he couldn’t believe I was playing on this knee. He identified surgery was needed the next day for faster recovery. This was one of my saddest days because of the fact I never had surgery of this nature during my playing career. I got the surgery and proceeded with rehab.
I knew playoffs was the biggest reason behind my signing. I had all these things running through my mind. I told myself …if I can walk, then I can play. Days leading to my deadline, I told everybody I will play. I didn’t care about the swelling or anything I wanted to play. I played a couple games and I really didn’t have any rhythm or confidence. All I knew was, I was going to play as hard as I could for as long as I could. I knew my knee was not fully recovered but I was not going to let anybody down. We went into playoffs and I didn’t know what I was in store for. I didn’t know how many minutes I was going to play, if I was capable of playing at a playoff level or even if coach trusted me after missing so many games. All I knew was, I had to come out and try my hardest.
I would feel bad clipping any more than that, but he continues on to talk about injuries in the playoffs, too. It’s a good read. Go check the whole thing out at DeMarreCarroll5.life/blog.