12/11/2013 09:04 am ET Updated Dec 11, 2013

The Nastiest Injury in Sports

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To be honest, it doesn't look like much. It's short, just over an inch in length, and stubby, about half an inch wide. It is white, slick, and striated like a cluster of angel-hair pasta. It isn't rubbery, and it doesn't have much elasticity. In fact, you wouldn't give it a second thought — not until it self-destructed, which it occasionally does, always at the most inopportune of times. And then you wouldn't think about much else but that gremlin that now sits at the center of so many of our games.

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