The NBA sends the results of the load management study to the teams

The NBA this week sent its teams data from a comprehensive study that showed no link between load-managed players and injury risk.

It's the result of independent research on 10 years of NBA data, where leaders in sports medicine took into account the schedule, volume of games and the regular season load players typically carry.

Over the years, some league officials have questioned whether players who rest regularly, even in back-to-back game situations, are not at risk of serious injury.

This study seems to support that idea.

Players, and especially stars, missing games without a legitimate injury has been troubling for the league as fans and especially media partners have expressed concern and frustration. That's dangerous for a league that cares about opinion and business.

This pushed the league to create a player participation policyThe league and the players' union have jointly agreed to allow healthy players to compete and fine teams that violate the policy's guidelines.

The study's participants — Dr. John DiFiori, Dr. Christina Mack and Dr. Mackenzie Herzog — said other issues could be contributing factors to the injury. Such as: previous injury history, previous surgery and age.

They also clarified that the report does not assert that load management does not work.

Dr. DiFiori added: „There has to be a balance between rest and recovery.”

IQVIA Injury Surveillance and Analytics' Head of Epidemiology and Clinical Evidence, Dr. Mack said, „Players don't see a lower injury rate when they rest.”

The 57-page report emphasized volatility among star players. From the 1990s to today, the average number of games missed per season by what are defined as star players has risen significantly. In the 90s it was 10.6%. In the 2020s, it was 23.9%.

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At a certain point along the way, teams began augmenting their medical and performance staffs, a department that weighed more heavily than the coaching staff and management when it came to player participation.

Now, armed with information and data gathered by the league, those performance personnel may or may not deviate from what has changed.

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