12/24/2012 - 08:35
A Promise to Return
by Josh Howard

I want to start by wishing Happy Holidays to all my fans -- those that have stuck with me and even the naysayers who still follow me. I just want to thank you for continuing to support me and continuing to push me.

I've suffered another injury, but this isn't the last time you're going to see Josh Howard on the basketball court. I plan on being back next year on a team, if not Minnesota, then somewhere else. I'm just going to stay focused, and get this knee right back to normal.

The injury happened during the New Orleans game. A guy stepped on my foot, and another guy kneed me in the quad. It caused what we thought was a hyperextension, but then I went in for an MRI, and the Minnesota team doctors came in and said the ACL was torn.

I'm getting a second opinion in Dallas and then I'll move forward from there. In Dallas, I'll be working with Dr. Souryal, the team doctor for the Mavericks. Dr. Altchek did my first surgery in New York, but this time I wanted to be around my family here in Dallas and home around my kids. I knew Dr. Souryal is a great surgeon and knee specialist.

The knee injury ended my season, but for the most part, I got a lot out of this year. I'm in great spirits and I know what it's going to take. It was fun to get the opportunity in Minnesota, and actually play some of the teams that passed on me during training camp.

I felt great going into Minnesota. I had a great offseason in Dallas. Through physical therapy and workouts, I was prepared for the season, so when I got the call from the Timberwolves, I was in the best shape I could be. I got the opportunity to play and even start a few games and I think I showed teams what I can still do. I'm very happy about what I did and optimistic about my future.

This season was the best I've felt since I left Dallas. When I tore my ACL in D.C., I came back the next year and wasn't able to play like I wanted to. I got the opportunity to start late last season in Utah, and I could feel it coming around, but I felt this season I was finally back. 

I think I proved a lot to people in the NBA. I'm just staying positive. I've always had a great attitude about my ability and I'm going to get through this thing.

My foundation has been very active around the holidays in North Carolina.

Last month, we had our annual thanksgiving dinner for seniors in Winston-Salem. We also recently did a sweatshirt drive with Hanes at a soup kitchen in North Carolina, and last week, we had the 4th annual CP3 J-Ho Christmas Give Back for the kids at Toys R' Us in Winston-Salem.

I was there for the toy drive last year and Chris wasn't, so this year, when I wasn't able to get there, Chris got to go home for it. He sent me some pictures and texted me from the event. Once again, we helped make it a great Christmas for nearly 100 needy kids. I'm grateful to have a guy like Chris in my corner. He followed in my footsteps going to Wake Forest, and being a hometown boy.

I think it's a really important thing for us to do. I can sit back and think of times when my parents didn't have things to give me. But that's not the true meaning of Christmas to me. For me, it's an chance to give thanks to somebody who has been there for you throughout your life. If I can instill that in people and let them know that I'm doing it from the heart, that means more than anything to me. As long as I'm here, I'm going to try and do as much as I can through the community.

Now that I'm back in Dallas and will have some down time, I'm hoping to get active with some stuff in this community. It also gives me a chance to spend time with family. This will be my first Christmas in a long time that I can spend with my children. I'm really looking forward to that. Every year I've been in the league except for one, I've been gone for Christmas. So despite the unfortunate circumstances, I'm very very fortunate to be here. It may just be a blessing in disguise.












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