November 17 Philadelphia Daily News:
“After what was one of the most fulfilling adventures in his basketball life, Sixers swingman Andre Iguodala has struggled in the early season like he never has before.
For last night’s game against the Cleveland Cavaliers, Iguodala was in street clothes for the third time in six games with tendinitis in his right Achilles‘. It is an injury that cropped up earlier this season, though Iguodala can’t really pinpoint when, and forced him to miss the second half against Cleveland on Nov. 5.
Iguodala earned a gold medal this summer as the starting small forward for Team USA at the World Championships in Turkey. He returned not long before embarking on training camp and soon was sidelined with a sore shooting wrist. When he missed a game because of the Achilles‘ on Nov. 7 against the Knicks, it snapped a streak of 252 consecutive starts.
To say the least, it’s been a rough beginning for Iguodala under new coach Doug Collins.
“I was talking to him [yesterday morning] and he really feels like he’s been banged up all season,” Collins said. “Whether it’s been his wrist or whether it’s been his Achilles‘. I told him, ‘You’ve got to get yourself right.’ There’s no reason to come back for one game or two games and not be yourself and then be back out for four or five games or whatever. He’s got to get healthy, that’s the whole key. I think from his standpoint it’s a little disconcerting when you’ve played your whole career and you’ve only missed about seven games or so. He told me this morning when we spoke, ‘I have not felt good for one game yet this year.’ ”
So, as great an experience as it was for Iguodala to garner gold, was it worth it?
“I don’t want to blame USA basketball,” said Collins, a silver-medal winner in the controversial 1972 Olympics. “There’s no question those extra games and that extra time does wear on your body. That’s the fine line that all the organizations are always walking. They all want their players to play and get that experience, but at the same time they want them fresh and healthy. It’s that fine line you’re treading. I love our guys playing USA basketball. I think most owners love that their players get that opportunity, but no question it is extra wear on their bodies.””
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