June 3rd 1999: Patrick Ewing ruled out for remainder of 1999 NBA Playoffs due to torn Achilles tendon
Game 2 of the 1999 Eastern Conference Finals marked the last game Patrick Ewing played in the 1999 NBA Playoffs. Tests after the game revealed that Ewing suffered a partial tear of his left Achilles tendon. The injury sidelined Ewing for the remainder of the playoffs as well as the beginning of the 1999-00 season. He was not able to participate in a 2nd and majestic NBA Finals run with the Knicks. In hindsight, a 37 year old Ewing probably would have had little impact in defeating the San Antonio Spurs.
Achilles tendinitis bothered Ewing throughout the entire 1998-99 season. The combination of the shortened schedule, recovery from the wrist injury in the 1997-98 season, and age/not being in the best game shape resulted in nagging injuries. Ewing felt the Achilles pop after playing 40 minutes in Game 1 of the ECF. He played through the injury in Game 2 until team doctors realized the achilles was torn.
At 37 years old, the Achilles injury proved devastating for the remainder of Ewing’s career. His impact on the floor was largely diminished. The team decided to build without Ewing and traded him before the 2000-01 season.