This article is part of our NBA Injury Analysis series.
All three players are suffering from a similar injury that is putting their availability for the rest of the season in serious jeopardy. Each has been diagnosed with a sports hernia, a misleading term that has become a bit of a catchall for any injury to the abdominal and groin area.
Traditionally, a sports hernia develops when repetitive forces placed through the midsection are rerouted into the groin and abdominal muscles, resulting in micro-tears in a muscle or multiple muscles in the area. Most often it stems from athletic pubalgia, a condition that affects the cartilage that conjoins the pubic bones known as the pubic symphysis. The subsequent damage leaves the abdominal wall and inguinal canal weak and damaged. As a result, an actual abdominal hernia can develop, though most often a true protrusion will not be present.
Given the numerous muscles in the area, there have been attempts, most notably by renowned surgeon Dr. William Meyers, to ban the term sports hernia. Dr. Meyers, who has successfully performed surgery on countless athletes including Miguel Cabrera, Marshawn Lynch, Adrian Peterson and former NBA star Grant Hill, prefers to use the term core muscle injury. The term eliminates the misleading hernia tag and indicates the injury can occur to any of the many muscles that comprise an individual's core.
This is precisely why, despite varying initial injury designations, Anderson, Knight and Williams all find themselves considering the various treatments for a "sports hernia."