Isaiah Thomas - G, Los Angeles Lakers

Isaiah Thomas is out for the same problem he has had since last year when he was with the Boston Celtics, right hip soreness. In March 2017, he was diagnosed with a torn labrum, the fibro-cartilaginous lining of the hip which cushions the ball in the socket, absorbing shock and giving stability to the joint. Isiah has tried resting to no avail as it continues to be an issue for him. At this point, the question becomes: is this something due to a deformity of the hip joint that would need surgery to correct or is this due to poor stability, flexibility and faulty movement patterns that would require rehabilitation with physical therapy? 


1) excessive pelvic rotation due to excessive hip flexor tightness

2) poor lumbar stability due to compensatory pelvic mobility and poor lower abdominal control

3) imbalanced hip mobility (excessive hip internal rotation)

4) poor lateral hip strength on right

5) translated movement in frontal plane on right into lumbar to compensate for #4



Tale of the Tape:

After watching extensive video including practice and training drills as well as game tape, the answer is: most likely both. Initially, it could have started as a rehabilitation solution. Isiah displays multiple faults and poor movement problems that lead to compression of the hip joint (stay tuned for the hip mobility series for more explanation). Interestingly enough, Isiah has shown left hip dysfunctions in addition to his current right sided problem. What might have started as a problem that could have been dealt with conservatively, might need more aggresive treatment depending how far along the degenrative changes in his right hip have gone. No matter the next step he takes, he will have to make the necessary corrections to have a long career in the NBA. 


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Note: I have not seen the subject of this article personally in clinic, rather all views and opinions of the author have been made based off of video footage of the athlete. This article is not meant as a diagnosis or a treatment plan.