As if it weren’t harsh enough that Dom Adduci’s shoulder woes dogged him on the basketball court, they started to hound him in his sleep.
Adduci, a standout junior guard on the St. Charles East boys basketball team, had grown sadly accustomed to his right shoulder dislocating during games. When it happened while he was sleeping, the situation finally became untenable.
“I went back to sleep and when I woke up I told my parents and everything,” Adduci said. “I didn’t want to wake everyone up so I just kind of slept throughout he night, swallowed the pain and told my parents in the morning, because I definitely knew it was something serious.”
The overnight debacle happened last Saturday, about a week after Adduci dislocated his shoulder twice while competing with his AAU team, Illinois Old School, at a tournament in Milwaukee.
Shoulder dislocations became a recurring plight for Adduci since he originally injured his shoulder during a game in December at the Proviso West Holiday Tournament.
Adduci said he and his family initially figured he needed to strengthen the muscles around his shoulder but, “after a while, it was just getting ridiculous,” so he recently had an MRI. The result showed a slight tear in his labrum and, Wednesday, Adduci had successful surgery to repair the tear.
The procedure conjured unpleasant memories of the past season for Saints basketball fans. Purdue-bound standout Kendall Stephens missed the second half of his promising senior season with a labrum tear, for which he had surgery.
“I was talking to him [Monday] about the procedure and everything,” Adduci said. “He just told me to have it done as soon as possible and even though it stinks you can’t play now, you can still come back to a 100 percent recovery, which was really exciting to me. He said he feels stronger now than ever, which also was very exciting.”
Adduci’s shoulder popped out of place a few times during the high school season but he fought through the discomfort, averaging 15.3 points a game while emerging as the team’s top scorer in Stephens’ absence.
The surgery recovery time is expected to be at least four months. Adduci is hoping to be healthy in time for fall workouts leading up his senior season but will be out for the spring and summer AAU seasons, which is an obvious concern from a recruiting standpoint.
Before the injury, Adduci said Bucknell, Yale, Columbia, North Dakota State and South Dakota State were among the Division I programs that showed substantial interest. He’s already reached out to college coaches to tell them about his setback.
“They got back to me and really wrote some encouraging notes and provided me with the confidence to know … when I get back to 100 percent, they’ll still be out to watch me, and if I can still perform, then they won’t take me completely off their radar,” Adduci said.
Adduci said he’s looking forward to recalibrating his game with a clean bill of health.
“The prospect of playing without pain, without fear of it dislocating is huge,” Adduci said. “I feel like I can come out and even play better than I did with the labrum tear.”
He might sleep better at night, too.
• Jay Schwab is sports editor of the Kane County Chronicle. He can be reached at 630-845-5382 or firstname.lastname@example.org.