May will have the surgery Tuesday in New York. Recovery time
will take six to 12 months.
"It's extremely frustrating," May said Friday in a phone
May, the 13th pick in the 2005 draft, has played in only 58 of
164 games over the past two seasons. He had surgery to remove
cartilage during his rookie season, then developed a bone bruise
May said he had been cleared to play again three weeks ago, but
had some swelling in the knee after workouts.
May underwent an MRI exam that revealed a troubling piece of
cartilage in the knee. He missed the start of training camp to see
a specialist in New York. Before seeking another opinion in
Alabama, May decided to go under the knife.
"It came out of nowhere and that was probably the most shocking
thing," May said. "I was on Cloud 9. I had finally just started
to come back. And boom, I'm back to square one, sitting out
May's absence leaves the Bobcats extremely thin in the
frontcourt. General manager Rod Higgins said they could sign a
veteran big man. Marc Jackson, who played for New Orleans last
season, is unsigned.
"It's a huge loss for us," Higgins said. "There are some free
agents still out there. We've talked about a lot of guys. Marc
Jackson is one of those names."
May's surgery will be performed by Dr. David Altchek in New
York. May will be on crutches for six to eight weeks before
beginning his rehabilitation.
"We are hopeful that his procedure will allow him to resume his
career and be the player he wants to be," Bobcats team physician
Glenn Perry said.
The procedure includes creating tiny holes in bones around the
knee to try to stimulate cartilage growth. The surgery was once
considered risky, but several football and basketball players have
made successful recoveries in recent years.
The 23-year-old May acknowledged the procedure concerns him.
"If I told you no I'd be lying," May said. "Anfernee Hardaway
was out a couple of years. Darius Miles is just now starting to get
back. Allan Houston. The only difference between me and those guys
is they were a lot older. The older they are, the harder it is to
come back from."
The 6-foot-9 May has averaged 10.4 points and 5.9 rebounds in
his limited playing time, including a 32-point game against Orlando
"I will be back," May said. "I'll be strong and I'll be fine.
It's just going to take a year."
May's injury is one of several concerns for Charlotte up front.
Forward Othella Harrington is out for the preseason after
undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery. Center Primoz Brezec has yet
to report camp to tend to a family matter, leaving Ryan Hollins as
the current starting center.
May's absence will likely lead to more playing time for rookie
Jared Dudley, the 22nd pick in the draft.
But coach Sam Vincent acknowledged he'd like another big man.
"It would help," Vincent said. "But wanting a veteran big and
having to deal with the salary cap and all the other issues
involved, is something management has to deal with."