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NBA Injuries

Hawks guard Trae Young suffers ankle injury

Dr. Marco Lopez



Trae Young injured his ankle, we are hoping it is a bad ankle sprain and is out for about 1-4 weeks.

What is injured?

Typically 1 of the 3 main lateral ankle ligaments: 1) Anterior Talofibular Lig. (ATFL), 2) Calcaneofibular Lig. (CFL), and Posterior Talofibular Lig. (PTFL)

The ATFL is the most commonly injured ligament in the ankle, which is involved in 2/3rds of all lateral ankle sprains

How is it injured?

The ATFL is usually injured when a player is landing, cutting or when the ankle is in a plantar flexed and inverted

What are the signs and symptoms?

Pain, Swelling, Ecchymosis, Tenderness/Tender to palpation 

What is the severity?

Grade I: ligament is stressed and injured but there is no detected laxity present

Grade II: moderate stretches to the ligament and there is laxity detected in comparison to the uninvolved side

Grade III: defined as complete or near complete disruption of ligament fibers and significant laxity is detected

About 85% of ligament injuries are grade I or II

What is the Prognosis?

Recovery from a lateral ankle sprain can be broken down to various stages however we will simplify them into three: early, middle and late rehab stages. 

The main goals of early rehab are to prevent further inflammation and maintain/improve ROM in the first 14 days. Rapid improvements in ankle pain are generally seen in the early rehab stage.

In the middle rehab stage, otherwise known as the proliferation stage we begin strengthening and proprioception exercises. Improvements in actual stability are seen during this stage which can last up to 3 months

In the late rehab stage, we begin to see the actual ligament regaining its strength up to 80% after 3 months. We focus on further strengthening in different planes of motion, proprioception training and agility/jumping mechanics. 

Studies show that 55% of individuals who sprain their ankle and do not seek treatment from a licensed health care professional may contribute and lead to chronic ankle instability.

Marco Lopez is a Doctor of Physical Therapy and Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist practicing in Los Angeles, CA. Dr. Lopez attended The University of Southern California where he graduated with his BS in Human Biology with an emphasis in applied physiology in 2014 and his Doctorate of Physical Therapy in 2017. He currently works in Manhattan Beach at an outpatient orthopedics and sports medicine clinic in which the population range from high school athletes to weekend warriors. Furthermore, he co-founded The Basketball Doctors, a social-media platform, with the mission to provide evidence-based rehabilitation to the basketball community by presenting fundamental knowledge relevant to injury prevention, optimizing movement, and performance enhancement as well as training for athletes with the goal of enjoying basketball for life. He is die-hard Los Angeles fan rooting for the Lakers, Trojans, Dodgers, Kings and Rams.

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NBA Injuries

Damian Lillard suffers groin strain

Dr. Marco Lopez



NBA Injury Alert

Reports are stating that Damian Lillard suffered a groin strain Wednesday night vs the Grizzlies. He will not participate in the All Star game and maybe miss a couple games following the all stargame depending on the severity. We expect CJ McCollum to handle most of the scoring until Lillard gets back. In this article we will go over what exactly is a groin strain and the severity of it.

What is injured in a groin strain?

The groin muscles or the hip adductors are responsible for adducting/bringing the legs together. The groin muscles can be separated into two groups. The first group is the pectineus, adductor longus, and adductor brevis muscles which attach from the pelvis to the femur. The gracilis and adductor magnus attach from the pelvis to the knee. Any injury to these muscles are referred to as a groin strain.

How is it injured?

Groin Strain occur in sports that involve quick acceleration and sudden changes in direction as well as powerful overstretching of the leg and thigh in abduction and external rotation.

A groin strain is a stretching or tearing of the muscle group as a result of overloading the muscles beyond their normal range.

Am I at risk for injury?

Previous groin injury and adductor weakness have been linked to the incidence of adductor muscle strains. Core weakness or delayed onset of transverse abdominus recruitment increases risk of groin injury.

Are all groin sprains the same?

All groin injuries are different and are classified by their severity. They all either are defined as pain during palpation of the adductor tendons or the insertion on the pubic bone or groin pain during adduction against resistance

Grade 1: there is pain but minimal loss of strength and minimal restriction of motion

Grade 2: Tissue damage that compromises the strength of the muscle but not including complete loss of strength and function

Grade 3: Complete disruption of the muscle tendon unity including complete loss of function of the muscle.

How long am I out for?

1st degree: 2-4 weeks

2nd degree: 4-6 weeks

3rd degree: 6-10 weeks



Nicholas, Stephen and Tyler, Timothy. Adductor Muscle Strains in sport. 2002.

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