Tag Archives: New Orleans Pelicans

Overview of Knicks G/F Iman Shumpert’s MCL Sprain

After an MRI today, Iman Shumpert of the New York Knicks was diagnosed with a sprained MCL in his left knee.  The injury occurred in the third quarter of Wednesday night’s game against the New Orleans Pelicans.  Shumpert drove into the lane and tried stopping when he landed and twisted his left knee.  This is the same knee that he had surgery for a torn ACL towards the end of his rookie season.  Since it is a sprain, the Knicks stated that they expect Shumpert to miss two weeks.

Ligaments of the Knee
Ligaments of the Knee

The medial collateral ligament (MCL) of the knee is located on the inside surface of the knee joint.  It attaches the medial aspect of the femur to the medial aspect of the tibia as noted in the image above.  Most MCL sprains occur with bending, twisting, or quick changes of motion such as in basketball, football, and soccer.

There are three classifications of MCL sprains:

  • Grade 1: Mild pain in the area of the MCL with pressure or  valgus stress (pushing the lateral side of the knee in while pushing the inside of the ankle out) placed on the knee joint but no joint laxity.  Recovery time is usually 1 to 3 weeks
  • Grade 2: Moderate pain and edema present with some joint laxity when a valgus stress is placed on the joint.  Recovery takes about a month.
  • Grade 3: Complete tear of the ligament with severe joint laxity and instability.  Usually requires knee stabilization brace with recovery taking 4 to 6 weeks.

Fantasy Impact
J.R. Smith and Tim Hardaway Jr. will both see more playing time with Shumpert out.  Smith logged 40 minutes on Wednesday night, finishing with 19 PTS and 3 3PT.  Hardaway Jr. on the other hand has come out of the All-Star break on fire, shooting 46% from the field and scoring 23 and 16 PTS while going 7-15 from behind the arc in the past two games.


Overview of Pelicans G Jrue Holiday’s Stress Fracture

Already playing without it’s leading scorer, Ryan Anderson, the New Orleans Pelicans were dealt another blow to their season with the news that starting point guard Jrue Holiday is out indefinitely with a stress fracture in his right tibia.

Holiday, who is leading the team in assists and steals, says that he does not know when the injury occurred but finally had it checked out due to the pain.  He is now in a walking boot to help stabilize the leg and will be re-evaluated in a month.

The tibia is the larger of the two lower leg bones and is located on the medial side of the leg.  Its primary purpose is load bearing and thus can be fractured from over training or overuse, especially in high impact sports such as running or basketball.  The most common region for a fracture to occur is in the lower third of the bone, a couple of inches above the medial malleolus (inside ankle bone).  A stress fracture is treated with rest and stabilization of the leg and surgery is usually not required.


Update: Pelicans F Ryan Anderson Diagnosed with Herniated Disc

New Orleans forward Ryan Anderson’s condition has been updated from a cervical stinger to a herniated disk, meaning he will be out indefinitely.  No word yet on whether surgery will be required.

Discs act as shock absorbers in our spine and are made up of an outer fibrous ring (annulus fibrosis) and a soft jelly-like center (nucleus pulposus).  When a herniation occurs, the soft center protrudes out because of a tear in the outer ring.  This can happen as a result of degenerative changes from repeated trauma and wear-and-tear to the disc or traumatic events.


Symptoms of herniated discs vary based on the location and severity of the herniation but can range from localized back/neck pain, numbness, tingling, muscle weakness, and paralysis.  It is also possible to have no symptoms if the herniation is not interfering with soft tissues or nerves.  Treatment options range from non-surgical options such as NSAIDs, cortisone injections, decompression therapy, chiropractic, and physical therapy, to surgery like a discectomy.

Overview of Pelicans F Ryan Anderson’s Cervical Stinger

Ryan Anderson, the starting power forward for the New Orleans Pelicans, sustained a “cervical stinger” in last night’s game after running into Gerald Wallace of the Boston Celtics in the fourth quarter.  Anderson was on his back for several minutes before the medical staff brought out a stretcher to help stabilize his head and neck.  As with any injuries relating to the head and neck, it is a scary situation until we receive confirmation from the athlete that they are conscious, aware, and have function of their extremities.  Judging by the way Anderson reacted as he was carted off the court, hopefully his injury is not a serious one.


A cervical stinger or burner is an injury that affects the nerve roots from the cervical spine or neck.  The nerves involved are bundled in a region called the brachial plexus, which is a group of nerves in the neck.  Any sudden compression or traction force on the region surrounding the plexus, such as the one sustained by Anderson when his left shoulder/neck area collided with Wallace, can create a burning or stinging sensation from the shoulder  down to the hand.  In addition, symptoms of weakness, numbness, and tingling in the affected extremity can also be present.  Majority of the time this condition will resolve on its own without the need for surgery.  A protective neck collar is used to help stabilize and support the cervical spine to let the body heal itself.  Here’s to Ryan Anderson making a full and speedy recovery.