I spent hours as a kid with a deck of cards. I never got near the point of doing more than a quick trick trying to impress a girl in high school, but the time spent wasn't wasted. I learned how a lot of the tricks worked, even if I could never get them to work that way for me. (OK, cutting aces did come in handy a few times during the poker boom, but we won't go into that.)
Misdirection and trickery are part of injuries as well. You show the shiny object over here, and the fans don't look over there. You say one thing while you sneak the ball out from under the cup. This column and all my injury writings are my homage to Penn & Teller's Cups and Balls.
If you know where to look, you might see how the trick is done. You might learn enough to hear the weasel words. You'll know when someone can deadpan through what they know is, politely, a lie. Just like a magic show, the Official Injury Report is built to fool you, but you can have some fun with it just the same.
You may never end up able to master the trick, and you'll still be fooled sometimes, even after you know how the trick is done. What you learn then and learn to enjoy is just how good the magician is. With that and with nothing up my sleeves, let's take a look around the league: