By Daniel Friedman
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In light of Jason Pierre-Paul’s freak fireworks injury, we’ve given a lot of thought to some of the strangest off-field injuries suffered by New York sports figures. Here’s what we’ve come up with:
10. Aaron Boone
Just months after becoming a Yankees hero in 2003, Boone injured himself playing pickup basketball. His replacement? Alex Rodriguez.
9. Joba Chamberlain
Parenting can be dangerous, especially when trampolines are involved. Chamberlain learned this the hard way, dislocating his shoulder while jumping on one with his son in 2012.
8. Lucas Duda
Duda was bound to get injured the moment he became a Met, but even that couldn’t have brought about the freak wrist fracture he suffered while moving furniture in 2012.
7. Brian Leetch
While getting out of a cab in 1993, Leetch slipped on an icy sidewalk and broke his ankle. He missed over 30 games.
6. Jason Pierre-Paul
JPP is so patriotic that he just had to light fireworks this past July 4th. Unfortunately for him, that excessive patriotism led to him severely injuring his hand.
5. Jason Isringhausen, Kevin Brown and Amar’e Stoudemire
What do all three of these guys have in common? Each has been beaten to a pulp by an inanimate object. Isringhausen threw a punch at an unsuspecting garbage can while on a minor league assignment, but was thwarted at the last second by the trash receptacle. Brown punched a wall and Stoudemire wound up lacerating his hand after punching through emergency glass.
4. John Vanbiesbrouck
You’re going to like this one. In 1988, “Beezer” was sitting on a glass coffee table, and upon attempting to stand up, the table collapsed. He was cut in the wrist and suffered nerve damage.
3. Freeman McNeil
In 1985, McNeil was already trying to rebound from a neck injury when he heard a screeching noise in the parking lot and quickly turned around to see what the source of the noise was. Turns out it was Mark Gastineau slamming the gas pedal, and the quick head turn twisted his already-injured neck.
2. Al Arbour
Bob Nystrom likes to tell a story about a freak incident involving Islanders head coach Al Arbour. After returning to a Long Island airport from a playoff game, Arbour drove his car close to the airplane to load up his trunk with his video equipment. The car suddenly flipped into drive and slammed into the plane’s rudder. Arbour separated his shoulder while trying to catch his car.
1. Plaxico Burress
We all know this story. Burress, carrying an illegal weapon, accidentally fired it off and shot himself in the thigh. He was arrested and jailed for this, not to mention ridiculed.