Doctors have discovered a nerve condition in Markelle Fultz's neck and shoulder that may have led to his perplexing shooting woes

Mitchell Leff/Getty ImagesAfter seemingly forgetting how to shoot over the past 18 months, Markelle Fultz has a diagnosis — Neurogenic Thoracic Outlet Syndrome.
  • Markelle Fultz has been diagnosed with Neurogenic Thoracic Outlet Syndrome, a shoulder injury, and is out indefinitely.
  • It’s the closest thing we’ve gotten to an explanation for Fultz’s subpar shot.
  • Fultz’s role with the Sixers has continuously been changed due to his perplexing condition.

After months of questions, we might finally be closer to having an answer for what happened to Markelle Fultz’s shot.

On Tuesday, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Fultz “has been diagnosed with Neurogenic Thoracic Outlet Syndrome, (TOS), a physical injury. TOS affects nerves between the neck and shoulder resulting in abnormal functional movement and range of motion” according to his agent, Raymond Brothers.

Shortly after, the Sixers released a statement confirming the diagnosis had been made after a series of consultations, adding that Fultz was out indefinitely as he went through physical therapy.

It’s been quite a journey for Markelle Fultz since coming into the league.

Entering the NBA as the first overall draft pick by the Philadelphia 76ers in 2017, expectations were high.

Then, suddenly, Fultz lost his shot. Rumours of injury or a bad case of the yips circled Fultz as Philadelphia fans dissected tapes of him taking shots in the gym. But the free-flowing game that made Fultz the consensus top player in the draft had mostly disappeared.

At the start of the 2018-19 season, Fultz was entered into the starting lineup for the 76ers, showing some progress, but still a shadow of the player that dominated at Washington University. Then he began to regress again, sporting an awkward free throw release that was so memorable it was mocked in NFL touchdown celebrations.

Read more:
One year after a strange saga where he was unable to shoot, Markelle Fultz looks like he’s regressing again

When the Sixers traded for Jimmy Butler, the team seemed to shift into “win now” mode, and Fultz saw himself ousted from the starting lineup and gradually losing rotation minutes. Shortly after,Brothers informed the team that Fultz would be taking time to see a shoulder specialist, and rumours quickly swirled regarding how long left he had in Philadelphia.

Now, it appears the specialists have made their diagnosis, and Fultz will begin physical therapy with hopes of returning to form. There are still questions surrounding Fultz, but this feels like the closest thing we’ve had to an answer.

His next shot on an NBA court should be an interesting one.

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