LeBron James will not be in the playoffs for the first time in nearly a decade and a half, but he probably deserves kudos for even making it back onto the court this season in the first place.
In a post to Instagram this weekend, Dr. Karen Joubert, a Beverly Hills-based physical therapist who worked with the Los Angeles Lakers star in his rehab from a major groin injury, shared the extent of what James dealt with. Joubert wrote in her post that the injury should have kept The King sidelined for six months and that he endured “pain, pain, pain.” She also commended James for “unselfishly” enduring it all so as not to let the Lakers and their fans down.
Here is a screenshot of the post, as Joubert has her account set to private:
@Numerologynow PROVEN once again RIGHT by LeBron's Physical Therapy Trainer
he said LeBron's injury was severe
Dr. Karen Joubert
read below pic.twitter.com/B8i97gaMbe
— VK NUMEROLOGY (@DCnumerology) March 23, 2019
Joubert apparently deleted the post however after it started gaining steam.
A physical therapist that worked with LeBron and Lakers trainer Mike Mancias deleted this post saying his injury should’ve kept him out six months and that he returned early to not let his team down.pic.twitter.com/VppezX9vZa
— Complex Sports (@ComplexSports) March 23, 2019
While the timing is a little suspect with the Lakers having just been eliminated from playoff contention with Friday’s loss to the Brooklyn Nets, there is little doubt that the groin issue was the most serious injury of James’ NBA career. The four-time MVP got hurt in a win over Golden State on Christmas and was out until the end of January, missing 17 games. Even though the Lakers have gone a putrid 5-16 since his return, James himself has posted customarily excellent averages of 27.7 points, 8.9 rebounds, and 9.8 assists a game over that span.
The King has certainly taken a lot of heat for the way his first season in Los Angeles has gone, but you can’t question his physical toughness, even at 34.