Jalen Carey knows exactly how to deal with a broken finger injury: Train his weak hand

first_img Published on April 8, 2018 at 8:52 pm Contact Matthew: mguti100@syr.edu | @MatthewGut21 NEW YORK — The injury bug that swarmed over nearly half of the Syracuse rotation for much of last season — Bourama Sidibe, Howard Washington and Matthew Moyer each fell victim and missed significant time — has trickled into the offseason and hit incoming freshman Jalen Carey.Carey, a four-star guard and 2,000-point scorer from Immaculate Conception (New Jersey) High School, is out for about eight weeks with a broken middle finger on his right hand. But an injury involving Carey’s right arm is not unique, as he broke it as a 6-year-old after he tried to block his father’s shot in a pick-up game. Carey’s father utilized that injury to develop his son’s left hand, his weak side.For several months that year, Carey dribbled exclusively with his left hand. He didn’t have an option because his right arm was wrapped in a cast. Carey and his father credit his ability to drive left so well to his intense dribbling workouts, which trace back to that right-arm injury 12 years ago.So it comes as little surprise that Carey is not more than “a little frustrated” that he didn’t play this weekend in the 2018 Jordan Brand Classic, a high school all-star game played at the Barclays Center in front of dozens of NBA scouts. Carey will replicate his post-injury workout routine from his early years by training every day with his left hand over the next eight weeks.“Just lefty work,” Carey said. “Work my off hand with my dad, my trainers. I won’t take shots with my right hand or anything. Hopefully, I’m back in quicker than eight weeks.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textCarey committed to Syracuse last October, choosing to join former commit Darius Bazley and the Orange despite offers from national champion Villanova, Kansas, Indiana, Notre Dame and Connecticut, plus about two dozen others.As of less than two weeks ago, he was supposed to pair up with Bazley as one of two Syracuse commits in the Jordan Brand Classic. But neither represented SU in the game. Bazley decommitted on March 29, and Carey broke the finger on Wednesday in a workout near his home.Some of the best players in the country on Sunday night described Carey’s game — what he would have displayed in the Jordan Brand Classic, as well as what he will bring to Syracuse starting in the fall. They described him as a do-it-all player and combo guard who can defend well on the perimeter.“Jalen’s nice,” said Bazley, a five-star forward. “He’s a tall guard. He can really shoot the ball, he has a good feel for the game. He’s really smooth. I think he’s going to excel at Syracuse.”Coby White, a North Carolina commit and the all-time leading scorer in North Carolina high school basketball history who ranked No. 19 in his class, once played against Carey when they were 16. Carey scored 20 points, White estimated, from nowhere in particular on the floor. He scored from 3-point range, midrange and via dribble drives.“He killed us. He gave us buckets,” White said. “He is straight buckets. He’s from Harlem, so he plays with that chip on his shoulder.”But nobody saw Carey play this weekend. A four-star and ESPN Top 100 commit, he was performing a jumping exercise last week with a light dumbbell for resistance. He slipped on a mat below, and the weight slipped from his hands and fell on his middle finger. His finger swelled up and the tip was crooked, he said.Over the next month or two, Carey will run sprints, perform hundreds of pushups every day and do pull-ups in a nearby park while strengthening his left hand.“My game could elevate more than what it is now,” Carey said. “I’m not a big fan of lifting. Just perfecting my craft … Usually I have injuries and I play through it. But this one, I had to tell my mom to take me to the doctor.”Carey, who sat courtside in a black jumpsuit at the Jordan Brand Classic, will arrive at SU in the second summer session, beginning July 2. Several members of his family were at Barclays Center on Sunday afternoon, following a practice session Saturday morning at the Brooklyn Nets practice facility.A large billboard on 34th Street in Manhattan featured Carey, to which he wrote on Twitter: “Growing up in a rough place, to seeing billboards with my face.”“Just taking it all in,” Carey said. “Seizing the moment, enjoying every bit of it. I’m going to be expected to do major things next year.”Carey added that he wants to wear No. 0 with Syracuse next season. Because, in his mind, that’s how many defenders will be able to guard him. Comments Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more