Tuesday, April 17th, 2012 at 11:00 am  |  7 responses

NBA: One-Game Injury Absences Up 63% This Season

Buried in an interesting LA Times story about the sleeping habits of NBA players during this compressed and brutal regular season, is an illuminating statistical nugget about the effect of injuries on players’ availability for games: “Sleep is a low priority on NBA itineraries and players often compensate with pregame naps. Miami’s LeBron James, Chicago’s Derrick Rose and Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook all swear by them, and the Lakers’ Kobe Bryant checks into a hotel before home games for a siesta. Metta World Peace also naps and made a change this season that also helps. ‘Not much partying,’ the Lakers forward said. ‘I remember going out more, but I don’t go out that much this year.’ In interviews with more than a dozen NBA players, many say they are not doing much to compensate for the loss of sleep but they are feeling the effects of the compressed season. ‘I’ve felt the three games in a row,’ said Denver guard Andre Miller. ‘That was tough. I had nothing in the tank on the third game.’ According to statistics compiled by the NBA, the number of one-game injury absences during the season’s first 60 days had increased 63% from the same period a season ago. When tired, even after a nap, most NBA players do what many non-athletes do: ingest a stimulant. Lakers guard Matt Barnes loves 5-hour Energy Shots. Oklahoma City’s Kendrick Perkins prefers a B-12 vitamin shot or two. His Thunder teammate Serge Ibaka likes green tea, as does Clippers star Blake Griffin. Coffee doesn’t seem to be popular among NBA players. ‘Coffee makes you too jittery,’ Perkins said. But although caffeine and other stimulants mask the need for sleep, they can’t replace it. More than one-third of U.S. adults receive less than the recommended seven hours of sleep per night, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And it’s easy to see why NBA players are among that third. Night games often end about 10:15. It’s close to 11 by the time players have showered, dressed and spoken to the media. If there’s no game the next day, most players aren’t usually in bed — either because of a late dinner, a trip to a nightclub, or both — for an hour or two. But when their head hits the pillow, many are too wired to sleep. […] But if an NBA team is traveling, players might not arrive at their hotel until 2 or 3 a.m. Shootarounds typically start at 10 a.m., for which players have to be present by 9. That leaves them a few hours to sleep. It sounds like a hectic schedule. Now imagine it sped up, as it has been this season.”

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  • Mike Mihalow

    “Kobe Bryant checks into a hotel before home games for a siesta”

    That one’s just too easy.

  • http://www.slamonline.com spit hot fiyah

    why does kobe need to use a hotel to get his nap? beacuse he can i guess

  • Jerome

    Siesta has to be code for … you’re right Mihalow, too easy. I wonder how many other NBAers have gameday siestas? Very professional.

  • @boweezy24

    I’m Not An NBA Player, I Have Lack Of Sleep Too. So I’m Tired When I’m In School. Ha

  • Cameron

    According to wikipedia, “A siesta is a short nap taken in the early afternoon, often after the midday meal.” Maybe it’s not what we all think it is lol.

  • AiRsMiTh

    Most humans in the world must not get enough sleep. Just today, I saw on the news, about some pilot who was alarmed (when he awoke from a nap… while flying?) by the planet Venus (yes, Venus, apparently a lit up one at that) and must have given the passengers quite a scare with what they believed to be “turbulence”. Supposedly most airline pilots are underpaid, and maybe not getting enough sleep. I’ve heard from a documentary (radical liberals, oh my) about pilots having to take up part time jobs… Perhaps airline companies, or more rather their CEOs, are more concerned about being the most “successful” airline company, than they are about one of their flights (and passengers) going down. Dirty money. Filthy.

  • http://slam zuzuzu

    All comments made within the confines of this article are pointless.