Chris Bosh Fails Physical, but Telling Him to Retire Is Arrogant

Chris Bosh is a 32-year-old adult, a multimillionaire, and a person who will likely one day end up enshrined in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. He can afford many of the world's greatest doctors, is an Olympic gold medalist and a National Basketball League champion, and is certainly capable of making rational decisions about his health. And yet some people insist he should retire

For his last three seasons with the Miami Heat, Bosh has experienced blood-clotting issues in his legs and lungs. This year, Bosh insisted he'd be able to play, but today the Miami Heat announced in a statement that he failed the team's latest physical and will likely miss much of the upcoming NBA season. The Miami Herald, citing anonymous sources, reported that physicians had "found more evidence of blood clotting" during this year's physical and that the clotting is believed to be in his lung.

Here's the Heat's statement, in full:


The Miami HEAT and Chris Bosh, in consultation with team doctors and other physicians, have been working together for many months with the mutual goal of having Chris return to the court as soon as possible. Chris has now taken his pre-season physical. The Miami HEAT regret that it remains unable to clear Chris to return to basketball activities, and there is no timetable for his return.

We are not able to comment further in light of Article XXII, Section 3(e) of the NBA Collective Bargaining Agreement, which precludes a team from releasing certain medical information without a player's consent.


The Heat's decision today certainly means two things: One, the Heat's famed "Big Three" era, a term that references the championship-winning power trio of Bosh, Dwyane Wade, and LeBron James, is over. The group likely included the three most talented athletes to ever play on a single Miami-based sports team together, period.

Two: With Bosh gone, this upcoming Heat season would probably be pretty dreadful to watch.

But with today's announcement came a deluge of cries for Bosh to hang up his sneakers and find a more fulfilling way to pass his free time. The hypocrisy in American sports journalism in these situations is staggering: Most of the cries for Bosh to retire came from overweight American sportswriters who appear to be incapable of even running a half-mile without collapsing. But over the next weekend, the American sports-media complex will proudly implore Bosh to retire "for himself and for his family," as if screaming at Bosh to retire is somehow helpful to him or something he hadn't thought about already.

The Heat should certainly release Bosh. That much is clear. His health issues are a distraction, and his on-again, off-again status prevents the team from moving on and rebuilding. But Bosh claims he'll one day be able to play again, and there's ample evidence to show that players can safely play while taking blood-thinners.

Bosh is only 32 years old. In nonsports terms, he's a millennial midway through the prime of his life. What's to stop him from taking a year or two off and coming off the bench for a championship contender down the line? At age 41, Ray Allen might return to the NBA this year, after all.

Sure, there's a possibility that Bosh has surrounded himself with yes men who are incorrectly telling him he can play just so they can leech money and fame. But Bosh has gone as far as to produce an entire documentary about his health scare, so it's pretty clear he thinks he's on sound medical footing.

So who are we to shout at Bosh that he ought to "do what's best for himself" and retire? If a team of doctors tells him he's good to go, and another team is willing to take a shot on him down the road, where's the issue in that? As long as he gets out of the Heat's way, the rest of his decisions "for his family" ought to be left up to him.

But God forbid people start tweeting at you every day, telling you to retire. That wouldn't be cool.


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