March 29, 2007
Though Toronto Raptors rookie forward Jorge Garbajosa “only” suffered the NBA’s second-most gruesome injury this year—Shaun Livingston earned top honors for that disgusting twist of the knee—Garbo proved he’s a man at the operating table on Tuesday. The Toronto Star reports that when he was asked about his preference for anaesthesia, Garbo chose not to be knocked out because he wanted to watch the doctor perform surgery for 1 1/2 hours:
Facing Tuesday’s 1 1/2-hour surgery to repair the gruesome lower-leg injury that fractured his fibula and spun his left foot to an inhuman angle, Jorge Garbajosa was asked for his preference of anaesthesia. There were, the story goes, two options: the full-body knockout or a needle in the lower back to numb everything below the waist.
“Garbo says to the doctor, ‘Just give me the back shot because I want to see what you’re doing,’” said Maurizio Gherardini, the Raptors assistant general manager, flashing a broad smile as he told the tale. “That’s the kind of guy he is.”
Gherardini said he’s been inundated with calls and text messages and emails from overseas wishing a fallen athlete the best. “They always envision him as the ideal loyal fighting warrior that the game should need,” he said.
Wow. This makes me feel like even more of a baby for turning away when getting blood drawn at the annual physical. He doesn’t suit up for the Celtics, but there’s no doubt Jorge deserves one or two Tommy Points for becoming one of the only human beings to ever willingly elect to watch surgery on themself. I wonder if they gave him a box of popcorn, some Raisinets, and a soda during the performance.