The 15 Worst Sports Injuries of 2013
This Year's 15 Worst Sports Injuries
Athletes all deal with the risk of injury while playing their sport of choice. Some sports, like hockey, carry a great risk of injury, while others, like golf, have a more minimal risk. No matter what, injuries will always happen, and in 2013, more than a few of them were pretty bad.
Some sports injuries are bad because they are gruesome and difficult to watch. Even the toughest of sports fans undoubtedly got a little squeamish watching some of this year’s worst injuries.
Others are bad because of the detrimental consequences for the injured player’s team. A serious injury to a key contributor could ruin a team’s chances at a winning record or deep postseason run.
Other injuries are just plain bizarre. Athletes have suffered missing appendages and dislocated hips. They have gotten sick and caught infectious diseases in their own locker rooms.
Finally, sometimes injuries are just sad, and those are particularly hard to take. These occur when a young person suffers a brutal and traumatic injury. They happen when a hard-working veteran in the game suffers setback after setback in his rehab or when a fresh-faced young rookie goes down and never gets the chance to be great. When a great player suffers an injury and is never the same again – that could be the saddest of all.
This year in sports had no shortage of all of the above. As 2013 draws to a close, let’s look back at some of the worst injuries suffered by athletes this year.
15. Derrick Rose
As if the 2012 torn ACL that resulted in an entire lost season wasn't enough for the Chicago Bulls guard, Derrick Rose suffered a torn MCL to his other knee last month. He’s done for the season, again.
14. Lionel Messi
The Argentinian footballer suffered his third leg injury of the season in November with a pulled hamstring. He hopes to return in January, but the injury-plagued season for one of their leading scorers has been a real blow to Barcelona.
13. Rob Gronkowski
The New England Patriots tight end seemed to be just what the doctor ordered for his team when he returned from forearm and back issues in Week 7. Unfortunately, he only lasted a few weeks, going down with a torn ACL, torn MCL and concussion in Week 14.
11. Matt Harvey
In September, the young New York Mets ace suffered a partial tear of the ulnar collateral ligament in his right (throwing) elbow. At first, Harvey opted for extensive rehab instead of surgery, but shortly after, it was announced that the All-Star Game starter would undergo Tommy John surgery and miss the entire 2014 season.
10. Lindsey Vonn
Olympic gold-medalist Lindsey Vonn suffered a scary crash on the Super-G course at the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships back in February. Vonn tore two knee ligaments and had to be air-lifted from the mountain. She has suffered minor setbacks in her rehab but still remains optimistic about competing in Sochi in the 2014 Winter Olympic Games.
9. Sidney Crosby
Last March, Pittsburgh Penguins’ Sidney Crosby took a wicked slapshot to the face, resulting in a broken jaw and at least ten damaged teeth. After ongoing concussion issues, titanium plates and over a month off the ice was the last thing the Kid needed.
8. Manny Machado
The Baltimore Orioles third baseman suffered a torn ligament in his left knee after legging out a single in a game against the Tampa Bay Rays this September. His leg buckled at the bag, and he had to be carted off on a stretcher. Initial estimates put his recovery time at six months, and the O’s remain optimistic that he could return by Opening Day.
7. Kevin Huber
Cincinnati Bengals punter Kevin Huber was the recipient of a vicious hit in a Week 15 game against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Despite no penalty being called on the play, Steelers linebacker Terence Garvin was fined $25,000 by the NFL for the hit, which resulted in a broken jaw and a cracked vertebra.
6. Tim Hudson
In one of the harder-to-look-at injuries of the year, Atlanta Braves pitcher Tim Hudson suffered a broken ankle in July when Eric Young stepped on it at first base. Hudson’s ankle snapped, and he missed the rest of the season.
5. Marc Staal
New York Rangers defenseman Marc Staal took a puck to his right eye during a game against the Philadelphia Flyers in March. He missed 27 games and for a time, it was unclear if his vision could ever be restored enough for him to play hockey again. Luckily, he recovered and has also inspired a mandatory visor rule for new players.
4. Kobe Bryant
Kobe Bryant ruptured his left achilles tendon in the fourth quarter of the 80th regular-season game last season. As he attempted to push off his left foot, something snapped, and he said he could feel that his tendon “wasn't there.” Following a lengthy rehab, Bryant returned earlier this season only to suffer a fracture in his left knee after only six games back. Now some are wondering if this might be the end of Bryant as we know him.
3. Zach Redmond
Back in February, the Winnipeg Jets’ Zach Redmond suffered perhaps the scariest injury of the year. During a practice, his femoral artery was severed after being gashed by the blade on his teammates’ skate. He lost a lot of blood but luckily recovered and was able to return to practice in April.
2. J.A. Happ
In May, the Toronto Blue Jays pitcher was smoked by a line drive right to his head. It was a scary moment for everyone, and Happ was carted off the field with a fractured skull. Miraculously, he returned to pitching just a few months later.
1. Kevin Ware
The worst and most horrific injury of the year was suffered by the Louisville Cardinals’ Kevin Ware who is just 20 years old. During an Elite Eight matchup with the Duke Blue Devils in March, Ware landed awkwardly on his right leg, resulting in a compound fracture. The mangled leg and bone protrusion were too much for many players and coaches in attendance to stomach, and broadcast replays of the injury were halted shortly after it occurred. Ware was well enough to attend his team’s National Championship win over Michigan, and he is back on the court this season.