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January 22, 2010

Roy Deals with Hamstring

Filed under: Uncategorized — Kevin Pelton @ 4:04 pm

As if the Portland Trail Blazers have not been beset by the injury bug enough this season, Brandon Roy will miss at least the next week because of his strained right hamstring, which he re-aggravated Wednesday in Philadelphia after sitting out the previous two games. The Columbian and The Oregonian both reported this morning that Roy will undergo Platelet-Rich Plasma treatment today in Seattle from Seahawks team doctors.

PRP treatment–which involves injecting the patient’s own blood, with the platelets included, into the injured area (see this New York Times article)–is cutting edge, but the evidence of its success is mixed. Prospectus injury expert Will Carroll has been cynical on its value. Here’s what he had to say in a March Q&A with D Magazine after Rangers shortstop Michael Young had the treatment for a similar injury:

Will Carroll: PRP (Platelet-Rich Plasma) and the prolotherapy kick we’ve seen in baseball this year has yet to convince me that it’s effective. I recently read a study on PRP in a general population and also the Wired article about placebo effectiveness. There seems to be some middle ground. Look, it doesn’t seem to hurt, but it’s pretty unclear if it helps. We’ve seen some positives (Andrew Miller), some negatives (Xavier Nady), and some “shrugs” …

A recent study showed PRP as being no better than a placebo at treating Achilles tendinitis.

After the reinjury, the Blazers will presumably be more conservative with Roy this time around. Portland has gone 2-1 without Roy, playing better basketball at the offensive end without the team’s leading scorer by getting production from a variety of sources. Jerryd Bayless had a career-high 31 points when Roy sat out at San Antonio last month and came up big down the stretch Wednesday in Philadelphia, but had just one point in last Friday’s win over Orlando. That night, sharpshooters Martell Webster (24 points) and Steve Blake (18) led the way. The Blazers struggled at times to score without Roy in Monday’s loss at Washington, but even that game was ultimately lost at the defensive end of the floor.

Elsewhere, Cleveland will be without Mo Williams for the next 4-6 weeks after he sprained his left shoulder. I’m withholding judgment on the severity of the injury to the Cavaliers until we find out how badly Delonte West injured his left ring finger in last night’s win over the L.A. Lakers. Cleveland has played well with West at the point this season (and Williams has an improbably terrible net plus-minus rating), so I think Williams’ injury alone won’t be too much of a problem. If both guys go down, however, the Cavaliers will be dangerously thin in the backcourt.

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