UW sophomore point guard Abdul Gaddy suffered an ACL injury at practice yesterday, and it was announced today that the injury -- and the surgery yet to come -- will end Gaddy's season.
Here's what Gaddy said today just before his teammates held their first practice without him:
How are you?) I’m alright now. Tough thing to do, but it is what it is. I’m just cheering my teammates on and go and have my surgery and try to recover from this as fast as I can.”
When you have your surgery?) “No date yet. So hopefully I’ll find out as soon as possible.”
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How did it happen?) “Driving to the basket. Took a long hard step and I think I stepped too hard. I heard a little pop in it. It hurt real bad. Went to the ground. My first reaction was trying to get back up, but couldn’t extend my leg.”
What was that like when you found out?) “I really didn’t find out until this morning. I didn’t really know. He said torn ACL. I heard ACL before, but I really didn’t know what that meant. I just wanted to know when I could play and he said you can’t play this year. That’s the toughest thing, not being able to play.”Did you think it was serious when it happened?) “No. I didn’t think so because I got up and I was walking so I thought I would be able to miss a week or two and be able to come back. I thought I’d be able to rehab with the trainer. But I found out this morning. They took the MRI. I had a MRI last night and that’s when they told me.”
Have you had any “Why Me?” thoughts?) “No. I talked to Coach Romar this morning and he was like the natural thing is to think why me, but the best thing to think about is God just has something better in plan for you. Really it’s kind of like a learning experience. It kind of humbles you a little bit. You don’t take a lot of stuff for granted any more after this type of injury. He really explained it well to me. Coach Romar is like a father figure.”
Ever gone through anything like this?) “No. I’ve never had an injury like this. I’ve never missed a game before. Not even in high school. Even when I sprained an ankle I always came back for the game.”
How will the team handle your loss?) “I think our team will be fine. We got great veterans on our team. We’re old enough. They’ll handle it well. I’ll be on the side cheering so it’s not like I won’t be there or it’s not like I’m done forever. I’m just going to be out there cheering my teammates on and I think they’ll just go even harder.”
Any doubts you’ll come back and return as the same player?) “Yeah I’ll definitely come back and I’ll probably be even better. That’s my goal.”
How do you plan to attack your recovery?) “With a full head of steam. After the surgery, get right into rehab. Rehab as much and as hard as I can. Get back on the court and do some running. Try to do some cutting and stuff and try to make it as fast as possible, but not try to hurt myself.”
Have you talked with anyone who’s gone through this?) “I talked to Tone Tone. He went through it before. I talked to Jamal Crawford. He’s had it before. Those guys are real supportive. They said you’ll come back stronger than ever. I talked to my parents. I talked to Cameron Dollar. He was just like look at how Blake Griffith returned from his knee injury so anything is possible, you just go to have a positive attitude about it.”
(Where you figuring out this season?) “Yeah. I thought I was really finding my niche here. I thought I was playing well up to this point. This is another bump in the road. I just comeback and start off from where I left off.”
Does it hurt now?) “Nah. It doesn’t hurt that bad. It hurts when I walk a little bit, but it doesn’t hurt that bad. It’s not going to really hurt until I have the surgery. I just can’t, the main thing is I just can’t really cut. So that’s why you can’t play.”
What’s the team’s reaction?) “They just can’t believe it. They didn’t think it was that serious. Yesterday we were thinking it was just hyperextended like Venoy had. I think it is just a shock to them as it is to me.”