Should Rafael Nadal Consider Knee Surgery As an Option?

Michael LanichCorrespondent IJune 8, 2009

I am no doctor. To say that I fully understand the nuances of medicine is laughable. 

But over the last few years, we have watched as Rafael Nadal has dealt with knee tendinitis that causes him pain and discomfort when he plays too much tennis without any respite.

With Rafa's dismissal at the French this year, and his revelation that his knees may keep him from entering Wimbledon, I am starting to wonder if a drastic operation may be able to keep Rafa winning slams and staying competitive for years to come.

When I think of Rafa's problem, I think of Tiger Woods. Both have been dealing with knee issues for years, and Tiger conceded to getting the surgery when there was no choice. 

If we are to believe that Tiger has no pain, then it appears that both his comfort and his game will ultimately benefit from his surgery.

Therefore, if surgery could/would be able to fix his knee problem, then wouldn't it be an option, and a good one to consider?

If Rafa concedes Wimbledon this year, then the only slam left would be the US Open. If his knees are still bothering him, then it won't just hurt him in the long term to play on the hard courts this summer and fall? 

If Rafa cannot remain healthy enough to fight for and defend his titles, then he should look to the future.  If surgery will give him another four to five years of top-shelf tennis, but in exchange he must miss six to eight months, he should do it.

As I have said, I don't know the prognosis of Rafa or the details, but I think that he needs to find a way to better prepare for the rest of his career and life.

If surgery is not an option, he may want to think about choosing his tournaments more carefully and plan around the slams, thereby keeping himself fresh and his knees in optimal condition.

Give me your thoughts. Anyone with medical expertise would be greatly appreciated as well. Cheers.