Amir Johnson’s Back: Why He Belongs on the Toronto Raptors’ Bench

January 13th, 2011 by Jerome Persaud Leave a reply »
There are some pretty bad reasons to injure your lower back.  You know, the ones like not bending your knees to lift heavy boxes. Not taking a break while shovelling snow. Telling your girlfriend, “Sure, baby, we can do it standing up!” Reasons that have you saying, “I should know better.”

Well, banging with the big bodies of the NBA isn’t one of them.

Watching Amir Johnson work to help his Toronto Raptor teammates is impressive. While being a long body, he’s often defending a bigger man. Especially impressive since, at power forward, he’s playing out of position.

6'9" and 210 pounds is fine for a small forward, but that is definitely undersized for where he gets most of his minutes. Yet Johnson's still putting up decent numbers and getting in on the hustle plays.

You don’t need a medical degree to see he’s playing through a good amount of pain: He’s constantly reaching for his back; he’s wincing; he’s slow to get up after being knocked to the hardwood; and, you don’t need to be a professional athlete to know that a back injury is restrictive for everything—from ...

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