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Dwight Howard returns to L.A. for platelet therapy for shoulder

Feb 1, 2013, 4:22 PM EDT

Dwight Howard, Kobe Bryant

Dwight Howard is trying to avoid surgery on his shoulder — he does not have a complete tear of the labrum in his shoulder. He doesn’t want another summer of rehab, especially one where he is a free agent. His shoulder can be painful when aggravated but it’s something that after a couple days rest and treatment would subside and he could go back to playing.

The problem is Dwight Howard plays a physical game — guys are going to hack him across the arms when he goes up pretty much every time and try to send him to the line. You want Howard to shoot free throws, not dunk.

Which is what happened Wednesday night in Phoenix and it sent Howard out for the rest of the game with shoulder pain. Howard will not play Friday night for L.A. against Minnesota.

In fact, he’ll be back in Los Angeles — the Lakers sent Howard back to Los Angeles to get Platelet-rich plasma therapy (PRP) on his shoulder, the team announced on Friday (check out the twitter account of Lakers reporter Mike Trudell).

Howard will rejoin the team on Sunday in Detroit, although smart money says the next game he plays is next Tuesday against Brooklyn. At the earliest.

PRP uses the patent’s own blood, taking the healing platelets spun out of the blood and injected back into an area to help heal cartilage. It is basically what Kobe Bryant has done on his knees (although that is reportedly a modified version of the procedure).

The Lakers hope that, rest and strengthening the area will help lessen the chance of injury. Although I’m not really sure how much stronger you can make Dwight Howard’s shoulders. Those things are massive. Still, Howard and the Lakers are going this path rather than surgery for now.

  1. 32magicman - Feb 1, 2013 at 4:45 PM

    Injecting blood cells will only fix half the problem. An injection of brain cells would be more beneficial!!

  2. cosanostra71 - Feb 1, 2013 at 5:15 PM

    Take your time, Dwight. We’re probably not making the playoffs right now so we’d rather have you healthy for next year.

  3. jeff6381 - Feb 1, 2013 at 5:52 PM

    He should just sit out the rest of the season besides the Lakers aren’t going to the playoffs and that would give him time to figure out where he’s going to play next season. Hopefully it will be as far away from Kobe and L.A. as possible but money talks so Lakers fans expect to see the odd couple together next season.

    • bozosforall - Feb 2, 2013 at 9:38 AM

      Yeah, cuz everyone else plays for free. STHU, jealous loser.

  4. abchome - Feb 1, 2013 at 6:17 PM

    Howard pretty much invites defenders to grap his arms with less than 50% free throw shooting.

    • eventhorizon04 - Feb 1, 2013 at 6:58 PM

      Well put.

      These 7-footers don’t have to be 90% free throw shooters like Dirk Nowitzki to stop teams from fouling them.
      All these Centers have to do is shoot around 70% from the free-throw line (which is still below average) – that’s enough to punish teams that try to hack them.

      Tyson Chandler worked hard and became a decent free throw shooter (around 70% the past couple of years).
      Tiago Splitter of the Spurs improved to a 74% free throw shooter this year after being in the 50’s as a rookie.

      Going further back in history, Kareem Abdul Jabbar and Hakeem Olajuwon were consistent 70+% free throw shooters.

      It’s part of being a good player.

  5. andrejohnsonforpresident - Feb 1, 2013 at 11:27 PM

    he’s dumb. he should just get surgery. it won’t heal 100% right? so he signs a new contract with someone with a damaged shoulder.

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