Veteran NBA shooting guard Gerald Henderson missed the entire 2017/18 season due to a hip injury, but aims to make a comeback for the 2018/19 campaign, writes Jeff Zilgitt of USA Today. Henderson, who had dealt with arthritis in his hip for several seasons, opted for a surgical procedure last year in the hopes of extending his NBA career.
“My hip had deteriorated so much, it was bone on bone,” Henderson said. “It was grinding all day whenever I wanted to move. Working out for any extended period was painful. It was just tough then going home with the family and you’re in pain, you’re just kind of on edge. … Just overall, I was not in a great state of mind, and I had to make that decision, and it was the best decision for myself and my family and for my health.”
After spending a year recovering and rehabbing, Henderson had been cleared for all basketball-related activities and he tells Zillgitt that he hopes to land with a team that’s “committed to winning and can realistically be in a position to win.” However, while the ability to contend will be an important factor for Henderson as he seeks a new NBA home, he doesn’t want to simply sit on the bench for a playoff club — he’d like to have a real role too.
“I don’t intend to go somewhere and just be the veteran voice on the team and watch everybody play and encourage guys, which I absolutely can do – be a great a teammates and a veteran voice – but I intend to do that along with playing and performing well and contributing like I very much have,” Henderson said. “I feel like I’m at my physical prime, and this hip injury is just a bump in the road. It will take me a new place in my career.”
Henderson, who is still just 30 years old, last played in the NBA for the Sixers, appearing in 72 games for Philadelphia in 2016/17. He averaged 9.2 PPG with a .423/.353/.806 shooting line in a regular rotation role for the club.