Allen Iverson Out With Calf Injury Until at Least Mid-March
The former NBA star, who was playing for Besiktas in Istanbul before leaving the team three weeks ago due to a right calf injury, was evaluated Monday in Birmingham, Ala., by noted sports medicine specialist Dr. James Andrews.
While Iverson, 35, will not need surgery, he will require a prolonged period of rest due to what Andrews diagnosed as a calcium mass that developed from a direct blow. Iverson also will get an anti-inflammatory injection Tuesday.
"(Iverson) will not be able to return to professional basketball for some six to eight weeks or more this season,'' Andrews said in a statement sent out by Iverson's manager, Gary Moore. "At this point, it is certainly more important to get his calf healed and asymptomatic than it is to try to play with continued pain. We anticipate a full recovery and certainly anticipate him being able to resume a normal basketball career.''
Andrews said the calcium deposit is in a "very precarious spot'' on his calf and pressures the leg's main nerve and artery.
"He actually tried to tough it out and continued to play while over in Turkey,'' said Andrews, who plays to evaluate Iverson bi-weekly after Tuesday's procedure. "However, he got to the point where he could not really run up and down the court because of increased pain.''
Iverson said on his Twitter account he hopes to be back for Beskitas for the playoffs, which begin in May. Iverson signed a two-year, $4 million with the team last fall, and has averaged 14.3 points in seven games.
"Dr. James Andrews will perform a procedure tomorrow that should correct a problem in my leg that has been bothering me for some time now,'' Iverson wrote on Twitter. "I understand that this procedure is quite complicated because of where the lesion is located in my leg. I feel like I am in the hands of the very best in Dr. Andrews and with the help of the good Lord, this problem will be corrected (and) I can go back to Turkey and help my team just in time for the playoffs.''
Iverson played in the NBA from 1996-2010 with Philadelphia, Denver, Detroit and Memphis. After leaving the 76ers midway through last season in his second stint with the team, Iverson has been out of the NBA. He received no interest from the NBA before this season, prompting his voyage to Turkey.