The Philadelphia 76ers are dealing with an injury to their top draft pick for the third time in four seasons, and yet again, the details behind it are murky.
Markelle Fultz, whom the Sixers selected No. 1 overall in the 2017 NBA Draft, is dealing with a shoulder injury that will keep him out of Philly’s next three games. But how and when he suffered the injury, how severe it is and what the Sixers are doing about it all are unclear.
The injury occurred at some point during the preseason, and 76ers head coach Brett Brown said he thought Fultz’s shoulder hurt more than he was letting anyone know. However, the normally cautious Sixers let him play to start the season, and it came with poor results.
Raymond Brothers, Fultz’s manager, told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski on Tuesday that his client underwent a small procedure to help the pain.
“Markelle had a shoulder injury and fluid drained out of the back of his shoulder,” Brothers said. “He literally cannot raise up his arms to shoot the basketball. He decided to try and fight through the pain to help the team. He has a great attitude. We are committed to finding a solution to get Markelle back to 100 percent.”
But later that day, Brothers told Wojnarowski a different story.
“He had a cortisone shot on Oct. 5, which means fluid was put into his shoulder — not taken out,” Brothers said. “My intention earlier was to let people know that he’s been experiencing discomfort. We will continue to work with (Sixers general manager) Bryan Colangelo and the medical staff.”
Are you thoroughly confused yet? Well, it got more confusing Wednesday.
So, for some reason, a 20-year-old top prospect who was a prolific shooter in college changed his shooting mechanics in a way that actually hurt his shoulder, and Philly let him play anyway. And that’s basically all we know.
We have a feeling this isn’t going to end any time soon.
Thumbnail photo via Bill Streicher/USA TODAY Sports Images
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