From December 4, 2012. Larry Abney's (203-F-77, agency: Dream Team Management, college: Fresno St.) basketball career has taken him across the globe for more than a decade but the feeling of flying high above the rim in front of thousands of Townsville Crocodiles fans is one memory that will always stick with him.
The two-time Crocs MVP has called time on his 12-year career on advice from his surgeon, who discovered a small hole in his thigh bone.
Abney had arthroscopic surgery on his right knee last week to clean up cartilage in his knee and sought advice from doctors before making a decision whether he would return to the court.
But the 35-year-old found out on Friday that his dream of helping Townsville to a maiden NBL championship would not be able to come true and he hopes to return to his California home before Christmas.
"I have a hole in my thigh bone in the joint where my knee goes and it will continue to get worse if I continue to try and play at this level and I will eventually need a knee replacement," Abney said.
The import said it was a surprise the knee injury - which has plagued him since his arrival in Townsville - ended his career after never having injured himself worse than a sprained ankle.
"I always pictured if I had a knee injury it would be in a blaze of glory coming off a rim and gripping my knee in pain," Abney said with a laugh.
"But I guess this was something that has built up over years and years of playing and this is the result of it."
The injury is a disappointing end to a successful career for Abney, who has played professionally on six continents for nearly two dozen teams.
"I've got so much to be thankful for and I'm not crying and don't want anyone to cry for me," Abney said.
"It's been an amazing run, way more than I ever set out to do but I did have a vision when I signed with Townsville that more than likely this was going to be my last year regardless. But I did have a vision of coming back and winning a championship with Townsville and going away like that."
He said his stints in Townsville, where he played for two seasons between 2005 and 2007 before returning this year, had been some of his best and he even got a southern cross tattoo on his arm after leaving the first time because he enjoyed it so much.
"I remember being here the first time when we'd sell out The Swamp and just throwing up that Birdman and having a crowd respond to that, you know," Abney said of his trademark post-dunk move.
"It's something that I'll probably never emulate again in my life but definitely I'll have memories of it forever."
Abney was able to let the bird fly once more for the Crocs faithful, dunking during the round six match against the New Zealand Breakers at The Swamp.
Starting five Fullarton Elkaz Johns Zunic Bines 4 Lachlan Dent 184-PG-00 BA CoE 5 Kyle Zunic 184-G-99 BA CoE 6 Sean Macdonald 185-G-00 Victoria C. 7 Tom Fullarton 200-F-99 BA CoE 8 Dragan Elkaz 192-G/F-99 Metro 9 Kody Stattmann&nbs... [read more]
No 2016 Olympics for rehabbing Jazz guard Dante Exum - 5 days ago
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Utah Jazz fans can relax. Dante Exum(198-PG-95) won't be injured playing for his national team again this offseason. Exum and the Utah Jazz announced Saturday night that the 20-year-old point guard will not play for his Australian team this summer as he continues a successful rehab from the knee injury he suffered with the Boomers in a friendly last summer. Unfortunately for the Aussies and Exum, that means the 6-foot-6 playmaker will not be participating in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Ri... [read more]
Utah Jazz fans can relax. Dante Exum (198-PG-95) won't be injured playing for his national team again this offseason. Exum and the Utah Jazz announced Saturday night that the 20-year-old point guard will not play for his Australian team this summer as he continues a successful rehab from the knee injury he suffered with the Boomers in a friendly last summer. Unfortunately for the Aussies and Exum, that means the 6-foot-6 playmaker will not be participating in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. The Jazz are very pleased with the progress Exum has made in the months following his knee surgery at the end of last summer. Though gaining more international experience might've been good for Exum, the decision to remain in Utah to continue working on his fitness and developing his skill set could be considered a prudent move for him and the Jazz. Skipping out on the Olympics, albeit a tough decision because of personal reasons and national pride, will prevent Exum from being overextended too quickly this summer due to national team duties. "At this stage the most important thing for me right now is to continue training," Exum said via a press release. "It's been great to be back on the court competing, and I'm really motivated to help the Jazz have a successful season this year. My support and best wishes will be with the Boomers this summer, and I look forward to future opportunities to represent my home country." Exum was recently given the green light to participate in full-contact basketball activities, and he's progressed from playing one-on-one and three-on-three games to game-like five-on-five scrimmages with fellow Jazz players and others, including BYU alum Tyler Haws. Exum had surgery last September on his left knee to repair a torn ACL, which he injured on Aug. 4 while trying to make a move in the paint during an Australian exhibition game against Slovenia. That injury kept him sidelined throughout the 2015-16 season. The Jazz had been very optimistic about the progress Exum made earlier in the offseason after averaging 4.8 points and 2.4 assists as a rookie in 2014-15 after being picked fifth overall in the 2014 draft. Ironically, the Melbourne, Australia, native became just the 10th rookie in Jazz history to appear in all 82 games. Courtesy of: desertnews.com
New Zealand Breakers (NBL) tabbed 25-year old New Zealander forward Robert Loe (211-111kg-91, college: St.Louis). He played most recently at Limburg United in Belgian Scooore League. In 27 games he averaged 7.1ppg, 3.4rpg and 1.5apg last season. He helped them to make it to the semifinals. The previous (14-15) season Loe played at KAO Dramas (A1) in Greek league. In 26 games he had 7.3ppg, 4.8rpg and 1.2apg in 2014-15 season. Among other achievements his team won Atlantic 10 Regular Seaso... [read more]
New Zealand Breakers (NBL) tabbed 25-year old New Zealander forward Robert Loe (211-111kg-91, college: St.Louis). He played most recently at Limburg United in Belgian Scooore League. In 27 games he averaged 7.1ppg, 3.4rpg and 1.5apg last season. He helped them to make it to the semifinals. The previous (14-15) season Loe played at KAO Dramas (A1) in Greek league. In 26 games he had 7.3ppg, 4.8rpg and 1.2apg in 2014-15 season. Among other achievements his team won Atlantic 10 Regular Season for two years in a row (2013 and 2014). Loe received also Eurobasket.com All-World Championships U19 Honorable Mention award back in 2009 at his college time. Loe represented New Zealand at the FIBA Oceania Championships last year. His team won Silver and his stats at that event were 2 games: 5.0ppg, 1.0rpg. Loe has played also professionally in New Zealand (Northside). He attended Saint Louis University until 2014 and it will be his third season in pro basketball. Loe is described as:
A big bodied PF who can easily spend time in the 5 position too. Has good offensive skills with a great shooting touch.
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