Former Mavericks Player, Shawn Bradley Paralyzed After Being Struck By A Car
According to a statement released through the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday, the former Emery High, BYU and NBA basketball player Shawn Bradley was struck by a car from behind while riding his bicycle close to his home in St. George. This resulted in a traumatic spinal cord injury in his neck that paralyzed him.
Career in basketball
The former Mavericks player, 48, stands 7.6ft tall, making him one of the tallest players in NBA history. When he was hospitalized due to his rapid growth, it was found that he didn’t have any physical or genetic disorder, but rather that he had inherited an extremely rare combination of the thousands of common genetic variants that determine human height.
He also came from tall parents: his father stands at 6.8ft and his mother is 6ft. tall.
Bradley was widely sought after by a lot of colleges from across the United States, but he decided to play for Brigham Young University (BYU). During his freshman season, he started all 34 games for BYU, but his main role in the team was shot blocking. He blocked the most shots in the nation (177), and averaged a total of 5.5/game, setting an NCAA freshman record in both categories.
He made a great mark during his basketball days, breaking his own team record by blocking 228 shots for Dallas- the highest total for the NBA in the 2000-01 season.
He also became the fifth NBA player to record at least 20 points, 20 rebounds, and 10 blocks in a single game, and the first to do so off the bench.
He had numerous achievements in basketball throughout his career and retired in 2005 at the age of 33.
The Dallas Mavericks have issued a press release on behalf of former Maverick Shawn Bradley as well as statements from Mark Cuban and Donnie Nelson. pic.twitter.com/F9fCtlZ1zJ
— Mavs PR (@MavsPR) March 17, 2021
Life after Basketball
After retiring as a player, he became involved in a private school for at-risk youths, acknowledging that he knows what it feels like to not fit in.
On March 19, 2010, Bradley filed for papers to run as a Republican against incumbent Democratic Representative Tim Cosgrove for the 44th District seat in the Utah House of Representatives. He later lost to Cosgrove.
He was also involved in many charitable organizations, especially ones that look after the welfare of underprivileged children.
The accident and Bradley’s road to recovery
In a moving letter that was released by his former team Dallas Mavericks, Bradley’s condition was revealed. It was the first public detail that he had released following the tragic accident.
In the letter, it was revealed that Bradley had undergone neck fusion surgery and had spent the last 8 weeks rehabilitating in the hospital.
It read that his strong sense of faith is being tested by his current condition and having to go through the grueling physical therapy to learn how to manage the new condition he’s in at the time. Bradley is a devout member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and had previously spent two years away from playing basketball in order to perform missionary work.
The letter further says that the doctors have made him aware of the long and arduous journey ahead of him. With his wife by his side around the clock and the support he’s getting, he is said to be in good spirits.
He plans to use his platform to publicize the dangers of bicycle accidents and the importance of ensuring safety.
The letter rounded up by saying that he won’t be giving any more updates as he would be spending his time working on rehabilitating.
Basketball fans have of course shared their love and prayers for him at what is probably his most trying times. I’m going to join in and say that I hope he gets so much better. He’s really fighting through a lot at the moment and I wish him the strength to keep going stronger every day.