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HOWARD WILL MISS THE REST OF THE NBA SEASON AND THE 2012 OLYMPICS
Tue, 24 Apr 2012 03:44 AM EDT

Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard will undergo back surgery to repair a herniated disk, effectively ending his season and eliminating him from participation in the 2012 Summer Olympic Games in London, Howard’s agent informed.

Howard has been griping about back issues since early March however it wasn’t until Los Angeles-based spine surgeon Dr. Robert Watkins examined him that the herniated disk was found. Baseball spreads

Howard received an epidural to alleviate the pain at that time, and the plan was that he’d rest and rehabilitate his back for 10-14 days before deciding if he could come back to play or if further therapy might be required. But his back has become worse and both Watkins and the Magic’s medical staff established surgery is mandatory.

Howard expounded he’s not anxious about any long term consequences from the surgery. Baseball odds

“The doctor claimed it’s a one-inch incision,” Howard expounded. “He said I can start rehab immediately and be back to full contact in 4 months. So I’m not actually concerned. If anything, I’ll come back stronger.”

Dan Fegan, Howard’s agent, said he hopes this development corrects any thoughts that Howard’s back problem was not significant and he was utilizing it as an excuse not to play.

Howard also confirmed that an obvious purpose he signed on to the final year of his agreement is really because the Magic related they’d trade him if he didn’t, and he wasn’t ready to throw in the towel on winning a title with the Magic this year. In reality he believes the Magic are really capable of a title run without him.

“If the players come together, we still have an opportunity,” he said. “I know exactly what we have in that locker room. I’ve seen it in spurts this season. I’ve told them, ‘We don’t have to be the most important or the most powerful, we just have to believe.”

Howard said he’s been told following the surgery he’ll begin full contact in 3 to 4 months and that he should not have any lingering problems.

“That’s why I’m doing the surgery now, so I won’t have any issues with my back again,” Howard claimed.

The back issues have forced Howard to miss 8 games this season, one more than he missed in his first 7 seasons combined. His total of 621 games and 22,471 minutes is the most by a center in his first 8 seasons in the modern-NBA era.

Dikembe Mutombo is next with 603 games and 22,138 minutes. For comparison, Shaquille O’Neal played 534 games and 20,148 minutes in his first 8 seasons.

“Dwight hasn’t laid down once in his entire career,” Fegan expounded. “It’s absurd that some in public and others privately, theorized that Dwight was laying down or giving up. Actually he was working his toughest to play through an injury which now requires surgery.”

The Magic also have been playing without Hedo Turkoglu (facial fracture) since April 5. He’s averaging 10.7 points and is shooting 34.9 % on 3-pointers.

With Howard and Turkoglu sidelined, Van Gundy has started Glen Davis at center with Jason Richardson and Ryan Anderson at forward. J.J. Redick and Jameer Nelson start in the backcourt.


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