Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard season has effectively come to an end. The larger than life player will have to undergo back surgery on Friday morning in Los Angeles to repair a herniated disk, thus eliminating him from participation in the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. Howard told ESPN the Magazine’s Chris Broussard “It hurts (emotionally). That’s the first thing — it hurts. And then with people saying and thinking I’m quitting on my team. This is a real issue. I tried to play through it and it just made my back worse.”
Dwight had been complaining about his bad back since March of this year, but the herniated disk wasn’t discovered until he paid a visit to Los Angeles-based spine surgeon Dr. Robert Watkins. Howard was given an epidural to help with the pain he was feeling at that time, with the plan being that he’d rest and rehabilitate his back for 10-14 days before deciding if he could return to play. His back ultimately got worse and both Watkins and the Magic’s medical staff determined surgery is necessary.
Dwight isn’t too worried about the surgery though, telling Broussard “The doctor said it’s a one-inch incision. He said I can start rehab right away and be back to full contact in four months. So I’m not really concerned. If anything, I’ll come back stronger.” Howard has missed eight games this season, only one more than he missed in his first seven seasons combined. His total of 621 games and 22,471 minutes is the most by a center in his first eight seasons in the modern-NBA era.
The newest NBA version of Superman (sorry, Shaq) seems to be in a great frame of mind to face this setback and push forward in his career. We here at Sports News Outlet wish Dwight a speedy and super recovery!
Signed, Isidori Mtabo