How One Foot Surgery Will Completely Change the NBA Draft

Joel Embiid's draft prospects have been altered by a stress fractureThis past Friday morning, one foot surgery left the entire NBA reeling, especially as it came just days before Thursday’s NBA draft

Up until last week, Kansas star player Joel Embiid was expected to be the number one draft pick from the Cleveland Cavaliers, filling the star-power void left by LeBron James’ departure several years ago.

Then came the shocking news that the talented young player had suffered an injury (later revealed to be a stress fracture in his navicular bone.) Days later, he went under the knife and, during that procedure, two screws were put into his foot to repair the damage caused by the injury.

According to a statement from his surgeon, Dr. Richard Ferkel, ““Two screws were inserted into the navicular bone in Joel Embiid’s right foot.  The surgery went very well, and I’m confident that after appropriate healing, he will be able to return to NBA basketball. Joel tolerated the surgery without difficulty and will begin his rehabilitation in the near future.”

While he may be able to return to the game ‘soon,’ recovery time for this type of operation is at least four to six months; with the draft just days away, it seems unlikely that Embiid’s star will be shining as brightly as it was prior to his fracture.

Now, sports insiders are speculating that he may go to the L.A. Lakers when they make their no. 7 pick, unless of course the Boston Celtics go out on a limb and take him at no. 6.

As a Houston podiatrist who treats many injured athletes, my heart goes out to this talented young athlete. I wish him a speedy recovery and offer best of luck in the draft to Embiid and all the other players in the draft pool. 

Dr. Andrew Schneider
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Dr. Andrew Schneider is a podiatrist and foot surgeon at Tanglewood Foot Specialists in Houston, TX.
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