Wednesday, July 18th, 2012 at 10:15 am  |  21 responses

Jermaine O’Neal Went to Germany to Get His Knees Fixed

Free agent center Jermaine O’Neal took a page out of the Kobe Bryant playbook and flew out to Germany for some innovative treatment on his creaky knees. O’Neal claims he hasn’t felt this good physically in years, and hopes to contribute to an NBA team next season. (J.O. remains quite salty about the way things ended for him in Beantown.) Per the Boston Globe: “The Lakers are considering taking a chance on O’Neal with a minimum contract, needing just a handful of minutes per game to spell Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol. O’Neal, 33, said he wants to return to the NBA following arthroscopic surgery on his left wrist performed by Celtics team physician Brian McKeon and therapeutic procedures on both knees in Germany. Lakers guard Kobe Bryant and Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez underwent the same knee procedure and both said it has added years to their careers. O’Neal hopes it adds at least one more year after a frustrating two-year tenure with the Celtics that ended with a broken wrist and mounting frustration. Limited to just 49 games over two seasons, O’Neal said he enjoyed playing with the Big Three and playing before the Boston fans but was perplexed by his role in the offense, or lack thereof. [...] ‘I had a fantastic time in Boston, with the city, the fans were phenomenal, the organization was phenomenal, I just don’t know if the playing situation was right to be quite honest,’ he said. ‘The hardest thing for me was to not be able to do some of the things I have been quite comfortable doing all my life. I accepted the challenge. I accepted the role. [I didn’t want] 10 shots a game, but it was hard to be told not to worry about [scoring].’ After averaging at least 10.6 shots per game — and a career-high 19.4 in 2004-05 — for 12 consecutive seasons, O’Neal attempted 4.5 in 2010-11 and 4.8 last season. ‘When I was asked about [offense], I tried to be as professional about it as possible but it’s hard,’ he said. ‘You put any player in that position and ask them how that’s going to pan out for them; it’s hard mentally because you’re fighting against yourself every single day. And it’s not like you’re getting the reps, even in practice, because they’re going to stay away from that in practice because they don’t want you to start leaning towards that in games. It was really rough. The things that kept me going was the guys on that team, [team president of basketball operations] Danny Ainge and just the passion of that city. No one wants it to end the way it ended, but it did. I was never really healthy mentally. It took everything in my mind, body and soul to be professional about it. When that’s said to you in front of a team, it bothers you.’ [...] ‘Listen, I don’t want to confuse anybody doing this interview. I’m not saying by any means I can go for 18, 20 a night. But I know I’m still good enough to go for 20 on any given night, if given the opportunity. I wasn’t given the opportunity to post up at all. Not even in practice.’”

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  • doug

    Good. Wade needs to hit up this German dude for his shoulder and knee too as well as Rose

  • Not Anonymous

    I feel like this guy in Germany works inside a run down house. Like when Tom cruise had his eyes replaced in the “Minority Report”. That’s just what I envision when I hear about this random guy in Germany.

  • http://twitter.com/SixFootGiant Kevin

    I honestly wonder what is this treatment. Is he using stem cells? Or he got the hookup on the medicines and equipment that everybody else dont know about

  • Mas

    German engineering has always been ahead in cars but come on! On knees too!

  • CheeseWiz

    American healthcare just sucks in general

  • Not Anonymous

    @Kevin, Stem cells is what I’m guessing. There’s so much ethical crap about stem cells here. I don’t think they give a damn in overseas…

  • http://slamonline.com LLC#12

    Platelet rich plasma therapy is what it is. To put it very simply, they put your blood in a centrifuge to separate platelets from the rest of the blood matter, and then they inject the platelets into the injured area. Don’t think stem cells come into it. Curious why this therapy doesn’t seem to be prominent anywhere other than Germany though. Why won’t you share, Germans…

  • Bt

    Stern Cells*

  • Johannes


    thats the doc…

  • http://twitter.com/SixFootGiant Kevin

    Oh thanks for the info LLC. If it works then all power to the doctor and the athletes who are taking on this treatment. Im surprised this hasnt become a big deal either around the world especially in the US.I wonder if this surgery could’ve saved the careers of C-Webb, Penny Hardaway and T-Mac

  • Mas

    Isn’t T-Mac still in the L?

  • http://twitter.com/SixFootGiant Kevin

    Yeah but he’s a shade of himself at this point. He’s like Ali in the Holmes fight….ok well maybe Ali in the first Spinks fight

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    This is going to be illegal really soon.

  • Boom bostic

    ^^ doubt it^^ it’ll be 10x’s more common before its ever illegal.
    So j.o. …. What was the problem in miami the previous years bc you sucked.

  • http://twitter.com/SixFootGiant Kevin

    In Jermaine O’Neal’s case I dont think this surgery can fix being old

  • M


    T-Mac said in an interview that he already got the treatment in germany and then told Kobe about it.

  • http://slamonline.com LLC#12

    Great point kevin, it’s sad those players didn’t have this kind of opportunity. Stuff like this is great in my opinion because the worst thing about professional sports is injuries. Anything that can lengthen athletes careers in a legal and moral way is fine by me. Though allenp makes an interesting point, when you consider some of the things already banned in sports

  • http://slamonline dan

    hello all form London England,

    It is a fairly well known in Europe for the German doctors to use a procedure that replaces the damaged parts of an athlete with a hyperalloy endoskeleton that is then re covered with living tissue.

    I expect this is the procedure J.O. has had.


  • Adevarul

    So if no gold for Kobe can I absolutely count on the arrogant fn clown axe to be banned from the US and stay gone?

  • http://www.nba.com Dacre

    No surprise. Have you SEEN what they did with Wolverine?????

  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B4FqOUz-Ia4 Ugh

    @Allenp – I doubt it, actually. The reason it’s not legal in the US is, I believe, that it hasn’t had enough trials to pass AMA approval. Declaring it illegal seems unlikely – it’s your own platelets and plasma, after all.