Nene, tired of giving a mummified look because of the pain in his feet from plantar fasciitis, decided to sit out the last two games for the Wizards. He made it through 61 games in his 11th professional season, no small physical or mental feat.
"How tough? Tough enough to think about the end of my career? Yeah, that's how tough it was," he said. "It was so hard to play the way I did it. I thought to end my career because it's so painful, my body can't support. I'm glad I finished the season, but the way I suffer, I hope, never again."
Unfortunately we've seen so many players this season fall to plantar fasciitis and have severe pain because they are not resting as long as they should be. When you have a schedule like these basketball players do and suffer from plantar fasciitis, it is necessary to rest more than two or three games. The constant pounding up and down the court just aggravates the condition.
Nene is owed $39 million over the next three years and said conversations with his wife Lauren and business manager Alex Santos convinced him to keep going. The 6-foot-11 Brazilian is motivated by his son Mateos and his faith in God, but acknowledges that he needs to rest this spring and summer in order to be healthy for next season.
"To play through pain, that's not necessary. For what? I'm going to sit down. Let the young guys play. They need the work," Nene said.
Coach Randy Whitman was surprised to hear that Nene was going to sit out the final two games. "News to me," he said. But he too feels that Nene needs to rest and get healthy. "It's a big summer for him to work on his body and then when the summer rolls around here, we're hitting the floor running right from the start and we didn't have that luxury with John (Wall) or him this year," Whitman said. "We have to have our main guys healthy and playing as many games as you can to get to that level of playoffs."
Nene was acquired from Denver in March 2012 in a three-team deal and has missed 44 of 117 possible games, largely because he has not been able to properly rest his left foot. This season he has shot just 48 percent from the field, his lowest in any season he has played more than 35 games. He averaged just 12.6 points per game and committed more than two turnovers per game for the second season in a row.
Reference: Washington Post
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