The Porter injuries: Dr. Snyder says several factors go into it

FILE -- Missouri's Jontay Porter, left, shoots over Georgia's Yante Maten during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018. (AP Photo/L.G. Patterson)

COLUMBIA --- The Michael Porter Sr. Family is basketball royalty ... the mom, the dad, the children.

Not just in Central Missouri, not just around the state, but around the nation. The Porter House seemed to be living the charmed, basketball dream ... taking it a step further, the sister of the family's matriarch, Lisa, is Robin Pingeton, the Missouri women's basketball coach.

But the dream has turned into basketball agony, an ominous sky of black clouds and bad luck.

The latest jolt came Sunday when 6-11 Missouri Tigers sophomore Jontay Porter suffered a season-ending knee injury after tearing both his ACL and MCL during a scrimmage against Southern Illinois.

That was the third blow to the Porters --- not to mention MU's basketball programs and Tiger fans --- in the last 11 months.

MU's Michael Porter Jr. --- the 6-10 superstar who was regarded as a top two or three NBA draft pick --- was basically lost for the season last November with a back injury. In June, MU women's star, 6-4, Ciara Porter, announced her retirement because of recurring knee injuries.

And it all started in 2016, when 6-3 Bri Porter suffered the fifth ACL injury of her career, forcing her to quit playing basketball for the Tigers.

It's more than any family should endure, basketball or not. But why and how did this happen?

Because it can't be a coincidence.

Is it because they got so big, so fast at such a young age? Would it have happened if they were 5-11 instead of 6-11 at age 17, because their bodies just couldn't mature fast enough to handle the massive growth spurts?

"Intuitively, I would say yes," said Dr. Mike Snyder, an orthopedic surgeon and sports medicine specialist with the Jefferson City Medical Group. "But I haven't seen any studies that says that's the case."

Then what is it?


"These turf fields and basketball courts are so much better now," Dr. Snyder said. "And for lack of a medical term, the stickier they are and the more traction you get, the more dangerous they are.

"When you plant your foot and your foot doesn't give, that stress gets transmitted up to your ankle, your knee and your hips. Something's gotta give."

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