Beating sounds came from the pine of our aging practice facility as I send the basketball up and down like a yo-yo.
I was dribbling the ball at the top of the key. For my non-basketball friends, that’s the highest point of the half circle on the offensive side of the court.
I felt fear in my defender during this practice and made an aggressive move toward the basket. Unfortunately though, the basketball had thoughts of its own, deciding to fumble between my legs. In a bit of a crisis at the time, I began scavenging for the ball. All would have been well had the guys on defense refrained from joining me on this climactic search.
As I regain control of the ball, I notice a body of mass gravitating towards me. The body of mass was soon identified as my teammate continuing his scavenger hunt for the basketball… he must have missed the memo. I noticed his body was parallel with the earth and somewhat in flight for the ball. There was just a minor problem, my defenseless knee was in his way. Had he been a hummingbird, he might have been able to slow down in-flight before it was too late. But no, he was human; as human as I. I accepted my fate as I realized what was inevitably going to happen. I braced for impact as my 230lbs journeyman soared directly at my knee.
Then it came, The Perfect Pop. He flew into the side of my knee completely tearing my Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL).
Thinking about it now brings back unfriendly chills. I remember falling to the ground grabbing my knee. It could have passed for the fetal position or a sideways “cannon ball” jump into the pool had I not been yelling in pain.
As I was carried off the court, the Pain completely dulled. It could have been the fact that I had already found comfort in what happened. That possible solace probably came from the plans I had already made about my speedy recovery.