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Russian NBA Champ Mozgov says US doctors’ diagnosis of his knee injury may be wrong

The Russian basketballer had to miss the entire season due to a trauma

MOSCOW, August 2. /TASS, Andrey Kartashov/. Russia’s NBA champion Timofei Mozgov told TASS on Friday he believed that doctors in the United States made a mistake treating him for a knee injury.

"There is some progress in my knee injury recovery, although not as speedy as it should be since it is an old-time trauma," Mozgov said in an interview with TASS. "I don’t want to make wrongful accusations in regard to American doctors, but their treatment of my injury was not quite correct."

"It seems to me at the moment that they have been treating me based on a wrong diagnosis," he continued. "Nothing terrible has happened, but the injury has aggravated as the time went by."

The 33-year-old center is currently recovering from a knee trauma, which forced him to skip the past season. On July 31, Mozgov signed a one-year contract with Russian basketball club Khimki.

Mozgov is one of the first two Russian basketball players to win the much-coveted NBA Champion’s ring, which he snatched with Cleveland Cavaliers in 2015. His compatriot and teammate at that time, Sasha Kaun, was the other Russian national to enjoy the privilege of earning the US-based basketball league’s championship ring, although he spent less time on the court compared to Mozgov.

Russia’s powerful basketball center Mozgov, who is two meters and 16 centimeters tall (7 feet and 1 inch) and weighs 125 kg (275 pounds), said in an interview with TASS last month he hoped to join the national team for the 2019 FIBA World Cup in China, but was undergoing a medical treatment for a knee injury.

"I will not be joining the national team for the training session as I am unable to fully recover physically," Mozgov stated. "However, I have enough time, or even more, before the start of the season."

"Nobody is hurrying me for the time being since [basketball club] Khimki needs to see me healthy playing for the club," Mozgov added.

Khimki BC Director General Pavel Astakhov said in an interview with TASS on Wednesday that Mozgov was unlikely to join the national team for the world championships in China.

The 18th edition of the FIBA Basketball World Cup for men’s teams is scheduled to be hosted by China between August 31 and September 15. Following the draw on March 16, the Russian national team was placed in Group B alongside the teams from Nigeria, Argentina and South Korea.

Defending the Russian national basketball team Mozgov became bronze medalist of the 2012 Summer Olympic Games in London and bronze medalist of the 2011 European Basketball Championship.

Andrei Kirilenko, the president of the Russian Basketball Federation (RBF), told TASS last week that Mozgov had a chance of joining the team for the championships only if he recovered from the injury and gained the required physical shape.

"Our team needs Mozgov, he would be of great help at the World Cup, but only if he is healthy and physically fit," Kirilenko said. "He [Mozgov] needs to complete his recovery and gain the required shape."