After Purdue’s win over Cal State Fullerton, we learned the unfortunate news that senior center, Isaac Haas, would be out the remainder of the tournament with a fractured elbow, thus ending his collegiate career. However, there is a chance that the big man could still play.
Last night, a source close to Hammer & Rails with insider knowledge informed us that it is possible that Haas could still play. After reviewing Haas’s X-rays with an athletic trainer from the Detroit Lions, it was determined that there was still a 50-50 chance that Haas could continue playing, possibly using a brace similar to what JJ Watt has used after injuring his elbow. They would try to get Haas to practice with the brace and see if he could possibly be a go for Sunday against Butler.
Today, after Purdue’s closed practice, various reporters confirmed that Haas did practice with the brace and wants to play:
Isaac Haas practiced w/@BoilerBall this afternoon. He had a brace on his fractured elbow. Brace needs to be cleared by NCAA. IF it is cleared, Purdue will have to decide if they allow him to play. He wants to play per Coach Painter. He will go through warmups tomorrow. @CBSSports— Allie LaForce (@ALaForce) March 17, 2018
When discussing it last night, our source agreed with my hypothesis: that Haas could theoretically continue playing, but possibly risks further injuring his elbow, much like how Elijah Sindelar continued to play after tearing his ACL against Northwestern this past football season. Regardless of whether or not Haas continues to play, surgery will be required for him once his season is done.
While this is obviously great news for Purdue, we must keep in mind that Haas injured his shooting arm, which means he will still be limited and might not be as effective whenever he plays. Nevertheless, this could be a huge morale boost for the team if Haas does play, or at least practices. We saw yesterday that despite still being in pain, Haas wanted to return to the court and continue to help his team. Hopefully, this will push the rest of the team to step up and continue fighting to extend this season.
Meanwhile, in his press conference today, Painter didn’t seem as confident about Haas playing after practicing today, despite going through the warm ups. Painter said he would still dress and go through the motions tomorrow. Ultimately, it will be the coach’s decision tomorrow against Butler.