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LeBron James on getting concussions: ‘I’m too tough for that’

During the closing moments of Wednesday night’s Miami Heat-Phoenix Suns tilt, LeBron James ended up dazed on the floor after a scary collision with Grant Hill. LeBron required a few minutes to regain composure as he knelt with his head down before rolling on to his back. Still appearing quite a bit woozy, James ultimately got up and remained in the game for the final moments.

While it was encouraging that LeBron appeared no worse for wear after the collision — and the fact that he insisted following the game that he’ll be ready to play come Friday night when the Heat take on the Detroit Pistons — some of his other comments in the locker room following the game are somewhat troubling in light of the focus and intense scrutiny head injuries have come under in sports:

“Never had one of those hits since I had on pads and a helmet,” James said. “So it took me back to that moment. I don’t know what exactly happened. … I’m all right. I’ve been better. I’ve got a little headache. But I’ll be all right.”

When James was asked about whether he’s ever had a concussion, he told reporters: “No…I’m too tough for that.”

Granted, LeBron’s comments were likely somewhat in jest and should be taken with a grain of salt as he was likely joking to a certain extent. Still, what is troubling about his “too tough for that” comment is that it remains indicative of the prevailing attitude among professional athletes as it pertains to concussions and the troubling aftermath such head injuries can entail, long after a player’s career on the field or on the court has ended. Such attitudes provide all the more evidence why it’s imperative for pro leagues to continue to oversee, maintain and constantly improve thorough and clear-cut policies regarding how an athlete should be cared for following a possible head injury, something all the American professional sports leagues are taking very, very seriously now.

[Video via SportsGrid]