Redick has herniated disk, says no surgery needed
By Andy Katz
NEW YORK -- Former Duke guard J.J. Redick
told ESPN.com on Tuesday that he has a herniated disk which is pressing on a nerve, but dismissed rumors that he needs surgery for the injury.
Instead, Redick said he received a cortisone shot and has been pain free for a week. He said he expects to play in the NBA summer league, the USA Basketball national team trials in July in Las Vegas and during training camp in the fall with whichever team selects him in Wednesday night's NBA draft.
Redick said he suffered the injury while working out at Duke earlier this month before going to the Orlando pre-draft camp. "It really flared up during the combine during the vertical tests and the sprinting," said Redick. "I've been pain free. It was asymptomatic. I've been doing exercises to strengthen my back. I'll be back on the court in a week."
A number of teams told ESPN.com that Redick's disk injury caused their team doctors to flag his medical at the Orlando pre-draft camp. Doctors from every team review the medical tests at the camp. Some red flagged him, which would mean not to take him while others yellow flagged him which means to watch his recovery. Sometimes where a team is picking can affect the color of the flag term. Still, doctors are more conservative at various teams. For example, Chicago's doctors red flagged T.J. Ford
's neck injury out of Texas while Milwaukee's were OK with the Bucks selecting him in the 2003 draft.
Redick told ESPN.com that no one said he "failed the physical."
"I've seen two back specialists and worked with a physical therapist and they don't think surgery is needed," Redick said. "I've had positive feedback. Hopefully I'll play in the summer league which will be a good prep for me for the national team trials."
Redick said the pain was the reason he shut down workouts, canceling workouts at Boston and Philadelphia in the past week. He worked out for Houston (8), Golden State (9), Seattle (10) and Utah (14) before the injury.
"First of all, I will be healthy and I'll be fine for training camp," Redick said.
Redick said he doesn't think his DWI arrest on June 12 in Durham should affect his draft positioning and was hoping that he would still go 8-14, which is what his agent Arn Tellem has been telling him and ESPN.com.
"The teams understand that it was an isolated incident," Redick said. "Obviously I'm very sorry about what happened. I don't think it will have any affect on the court. I still think I can play and I'm a person of high character."
Still, the last few weeks -- the waiting, the DWI, the back injury -- have made him anticipate the arrival of Wednesday night's draft.
"It's going to be a huge relief," Redick said of being drafted. "I'm a nervous wreck right now. I've had a lot of anxiety the last few weeks. Not everyone will admit that but I will because of the uncertainty of the situation."
The reality is that Redick may end up with two possible destinations late in the lottery -- at Orlando at No. 11 and Utah at No. 14 as long as they agree with Redick that his back is fine.