It seems everyone is giving their take on how long Paul George of the Indiana Pacers will be out and what the recovery process will be following the forward’s sufferance of a gruesome leg injury during a Team USA scrimmage Friday.
Now, someone who has actually experienced a similar injury is giving their take on the matter: Miami Dolphins wide receiver Brian Hartline.
Hartline, who suffered the injury while playing high school football, told ESPN’s James Walker that George will return stronger than ever.
“I think so. Bones typically, when they break, they heal stronger,” Hartline told ESPN.com Saturday after the Dolphins’ scrimmage. “They calcify, they get even thicker and they become even stronger. So, to me, I felt like I got faster afterwards, because you do so much ankle mobility, so much calf work, you do so much strengthening that you usually don’t do and take for granted. You go from being on top, to ground zero and you just rebuild back up. I feel like you get stronger.”
“I was reading everybody saying ‘Ah, his career might be over.’ His career is not anywhere near over,” Hartline said of George. “He’ll be fine. He’s a freak athlete. He’ll do awesome, he’ll work hard. That’s my perspective.”
Hartline said he went through six-to-eight months of rehab and was a champion in hurdles at Ohio State a year later. The injury also hasn’t prevented Hartline from having long-term success. He’s emerged as a very good wide receiver for the Dolphins, topping 1,000 yards in each of the past two seasons.
Hartline’s story certainly bodes well for George as he attempts to get back on the court.