What did Andrew Bogut ever do to offend the Basketball Gods? The Aussie NBA superstar and probable All-NBA Teamer for 2009-2010 suffered serious injuries today against the Suns, after a sickening post-dunk crash to the floor. And when I say “injuries” I do mean plural. According to the official report, Bogut sustained a dislocated right elbow, a sprained right wrist and a broken right hand. Just reading that sentence alone makes me feel ill, let alone watching the footage of the incident (which I am deliberately not posting here). It is the cruelest of blows to a player who has made incredible strides this season, arguably cementing himself as the consensus #2 center in the league, and striking fear into the hearts of countless fans who have watched him destroy their teams from the inside-out.
Now that I’ve reported the facts, I can get to my emotions…
I’m angry. Really fucking angry, that this has happened to a good bloke who has worked his butt off to get to this elite level. I feel for Bucks fans everywhere, who will have to watch their team limp into the postseason without their dominant big man. I’m upset for basketball fans all over Australia who have been united this past six months watching Bogut climb to these heights. No longer are NBA conversations with my mates simply about Lebron and Kobe and the title-contending teams. Bogut has made all Aussies who love this game damn proud, and given us bigger reasons to follow the NBA than Lebron and Kobe ever could. As the chief editor of this blog I can tell you that as the season rolled on, thousands more visitors were tuning in to read about Bogut and the Bucks charge towards the playoffs. Given the misery I’m enduring as a Pistons fan this season, the rise of Bogut has been the single biggest highlight for me. 2009-2010 will be forever stamped in history as the season an Aussie was first seriously part of NBA All-Star discussions, and likely the first season an Aussie is named to an All-NBA Team. It has been historic in more ways than one.
Lastly, I’m absolutely gutted for Andrew. Having overcome a season-ending injury last year, I thought he’d already suffered his fair share of adversity in this league. Apparently not. But if there’s one thing I’m sure of, it’s that Andrew Bogut will come back better than ever. Dealing with the #1 draft pick hype and criticisms over the years has only made this guy tougher, and this season he’s already proved countless doubters wrong. He will be back to prove that 2009-2010 was no fluke.
Andrew, we wish you all the best in a speedy recovery. Get back on the court soon mate.